‘Developing competitiveness to boost tourism need of the hour in Dhofar’

Muscat - 

The College of Applied Sciences in Salalah recently held a two-day symposium ‘Opportunities and challenges in Dhofar’. The symposium had themes like tourism in Dhofar, tourism management and emerging trends in tourism among others.

Dr Viju Mathew, a participant, in his paper titled ‘Oman tourism industry entering the second phase: Competitiveness, challenges and strategies’, called tourism a social change where developing competitiveness was the need of the hour. The paper titled ‘Problems and prospects of tourism development in Salalah’ drew attention towards the lack of amenities and trained manpower.

The discussion on problems and prospects of tourism in Dhofar proposed taking a modern approach to marketing along with a survey identifying problems tourists to Salalah face. The negative impacts of tourist activities also came up for discussion.

Experts said communication played an important role and that it was necessary to have effective communication between stakeholders on sustainable development principles.

One of the papers examined the level of entrepreneurship in Oman’s economy.

A paper by Dr Samskrati Gulwady from Sohar College of Applied Sciences highlighted the role of social websites in influences travel decisions of Omani youths.

The paper by Nayama al Ghafri, another participant,  talked about the degradation of Salalah’s natural environment with increased tourist inflow and the need to control and manage environmental issues that would lead to sustainable development. A research paper discussed Taqah as a case study where women played an important role in developing heritage tourism.

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