Govt aims to double tourist arrivals to North East; signs MoU with Airbnb

The Central government has inked four MoUs with US-based hospitality major Airbnb  under the aegis of the Ministry of Development of North East Region (DoNER) to promote tourism and generate technology-enabled livelihood opportunities in the North-East. “The development of the North East Region is of prime importance for the overall inclusive growth of India, and tourism development has always been one of our key focus areas, keeping in mind the North East’s natural beauty and cultural heritage,” said Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh after signing the agreement with Airbnb.

“These MoUs with Airbnb are a step towards achieving our aim of doubling tourist growth rate in the next three years, by creating more sustainable accommodation options and enhancing the hospitality service standards in the region,” he added.

The Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region (I/C), Dr. Jitendra Singh at the signing ceremony of MoUs under the aegis of Ministry of DoNER. The Secretary, DoNER, Naveen Verma, the Secretary, NEC, Ram Muivah and the Regional Director, Airbnb Asia Pacific, Kum Hong Siew are also seen.

The MoUs were signed on behalf of the North Eastern Council (NEC), the North East Tourism Development Council (NETDC) and two key livelihood initiatives, North East Rural Livelihood Project (NERLP) and North Eastern Region Community Resource Management Project (NERCORMP). The MoUs aim at creating hospitality micro-entrepreneurs across key destinations in the North East of India.  Kum Hong Siew, Regional Director, Airbnb Asia Pacific signed the MoUs on behalf of Airbnb.

Under the MoUs, the NEC, NETDC and Airbnb agree to:

  • Expand tourism in the North East of India through Airbnb’s global platform
  • Improve the quality of homestay facilities and unique properties in the North East of India
  • Provide and promote outstanding tourism resources in the North East of India, and
  • Cooperate to improve the regulatory environment for home sharing in the North East of India

MoUs were also signed for strategic partnerships by the NERLP and NERCORMP with Airbnb to generate technology-enabled livelihood opportunities in tourism and hospitality for micro-entrepreneurs in the North East of India, and to help low-income families monetize their existing assets through home sharing. Under these agreements, Airbnb will provide training to core teams of the NERLP and NERCORMP, which will further train existing and potential hosts on home sharing, responsible hosting, hospitality standards, hygiene and basic amenities.