Impact of political instability on tourism industry of bangladesh
LETTER OF SUBMISSION
Department of Management Studies
University of Chittagong
Chittagong- 4331, Bangladesh.
Sub: Submission of Industrial Term Paper.
With an immense pleasure, I would like to submit my industrial tour report on “Impact of
Political instability on Tourism Industry of Bangladesh” With my limited scope and
knowledge. I have tried my best to gain practical experience and tried to reflect the same in
report. I wish you are heartily consideration, if there is any discrepancy in my report.
I wish to thank for your excellent coordination and efficient direction to make the program
Md. Tawhidul Hassan
Department of Management Studies
University of Chittagong.
First of all my Utmost gratitude’s is to Almighty, Who give me the courage and strengths to
prepare the report. Beginning of the report I deem it is my duty to record my appreciation and
gratitude to few person who have helped me to prepare this report in many ways.
I am indebted to the authority for taking the initiative to include practical assignment for the
BBA Students. This has created an opportunity for students to know the various aspects as
well as the research-based study. I want to mention the name of honorable teacher Swadip
Bhattacharjee, Lecturer, Department of Management Studies.
My teacher gave me detail instructions how to collect data from primary sources as well as
secondary sources. He spent his valuable time to give me theoretical knowledge about
Tourism is world's largest legitimate service industry. Any angle we look at tourism industry-
be generate faster and deeper human employment or to educate our generations or simply to
collect memorable experiences in life, there is no parallel to tourism.
Tourism industry in Bangladesh is becoming an emerging issue both for the public and
private sector to establish their eligibility for accomplishing a successful business.
Bangladesh is fast emerging as an alluring tourist spot on the global map. It is a land of
diverse attractions, bountiful nature and millions of friendly people with more than a
millennium of cultural heritage. The country has failed to utilize even 10 per cent of its
tourism potential due to lack of sufficient steps and entrepreneurship by the government and
The current wave of violence and political unrest across the country has hit the country's
tourism industry hard. The arrival of foreign tourists and movement of domestic ones have
thinned out in the recent times, according to the industry insiders.
The occupancy rate at posh and other hotels, motels, rest houses, guest houses as well as
bookings for various entertainment spots and utilisation of their capacities have dropped to
their ever-lowest level, in the aftermath of a lingering restive political situation since last
CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION
Tourism has become a very important and dynamic sector both in the world economy and
particular in the developing countries. Its growth affects not only the activities directly linked
to tourism but also other sectors. Tourism is already an important sector in some developing
countries and will become so for others. Developing countries have been fast growing in
tourism industry terms in the world over the last decade. Tourism is one of the most
important sectors in a large number of developing countries. Increases in economic growth,
disposable income and leisure time, political stability, and aggressive tourism campaigns,
among others factors, have fuelled the significant growth of tourism.
Developing countries have some common characteristics, such as extreme poverty and
widespread conflict (including civil war and ethnic clashes), extensive political corruption,
lack of political and social stability, human resource weakness (human assets index, nutrition,
health, education and adult literacy), and economic vulnerability. Bangladesh is a developing
country in Asia, holding high potentiality for tourism. For a long time, Bangladesh has been
an attractive destination for tourists. But at present, its position is not significant in terms of
the international tourism market. The overall objective of this paper is to evaluate the
political problem in tourism facing Bangladesh.
1.2 Objective of the Study
There are a number of objectives that I put ahead in my study. The major objectives of the
study are to give a idea of political instability and its impact on Tourism industry of
Bangladesh. But mainly we are highlighting the following main objectives:
i. To identify the overview of Tourism Industry.
ii. To identify the tourist spot of Bangladesh
iii. to identify the political problems in Bangladesh
iii. To find out the way of solving problems.
1.3 Methods of Data Collection
The data are mainly collected from secondary sources.
The “Secondary Sources” of data and information are –
Companies other published information.
I tried my best to collect the maximum information. But this report is not free from short
faults. While me preparing this report I faced some problems. These are as follows:
Some data could not be collected because of the confidentiality and official secrecy of
Non-availability of published data.
The collection of secondary information was difficult, as the access to concern people
was not ease.
There was shortage of adequate literature.
Most of the data and information is based on secondary sources.
CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE
Tourism has considered as the world’s largest and rapid growing industry of modern business
world. Today tourism is the most advantageous and up-to-date business all over the world. It
has become one of the major international trade categories. International tourism ranks fourth
after fuels, chemicals and automotive products in terms of generation of export income.
For many developing countries, it is one of the main income sources and the number one
export category, creating much needed employment and opportunities for development.
Tourism is essential for many countries due to its capacity to generate income through the
consumption of goods and services by visitors and tourists, the taxes levied on businesses in
the tourism industry and the employment opportunity for the service industries linked with
tourism. These service industries include transportation services such as road, air and cruise
ships and boats, accommodation such as hotels, motels, restaurants, bars and entertainment
venues and other hospitality industry services such as spas, resorts, etc. According to
UNWTO, the top 15 destinations absorbed 98% of all international tourist arrivals in 1950, in
1970 the proportion was 75% and this fell to 57% in 2007, reflecting the emergence of new
destinations but many of them in developing countries. Moreover, Bangladesh has
archaeological, natural, ecological, cultural and other tourism products to attract tourists.
Therefore, Bangladesh has ample opportunity of become as a tourist nation. Tourism, mostly
a service industry, is more labor oriented than other sectors of production. Automated and
computerized processes may replace human beings in other industries to a great extent, but in
the tourism sector the key factor is service, particularly personal service. (Tuhin, 2013)
2.1.1 Location and Physical features Tourism of Bangladesh:
Tourism in Bangladesh is a developing foreign currency earner. The country was listed
by Lonely Planet in 2011 as the "best value destination".
Bangladesh's tourist attractions include, historical and monuments, resorts, beaches, picnic
spots, forests and tribal people, wildlife of various species. Bangladesh offers ample
opportunities to tourists for angling, water skiing, river cruising, hiking, rowing, yachting, sea
bathing as well as bringing one in close touch with pristine nature.
In the northern part, comprising the Rajshahi division, there are archaeological sites,
including the temple city Puthia in Rajshahi; the largest and most ancient archaeological
site, Mahasthangarh in Bogra; the single largest Buddhist monastery, Paharpur in Naogaon;
the most ornamental terracota Hindu temple in Bangladesh Kantaji Temple, and many
rajbaris or palaces of old zamindars.
In the south-western part, mainly the Khulna Division, there is the Sundarbans, the largest
mangrove forest of the world with Royal Bengal Tiger andspotted deer. The historically and
architecturally important sixty domed mosque in Bagerhat is a notable site.
In the south-eastern part, which is the Chittagong division, there are natural and hilly areas
like Chittagong Hill Tracts, along with sandy sea beaches. The most notable beach, in Cox's
Bazar, is a contender for the title of longest unbroken sandy sea beach in the world.
In the north-eastern part, Sylhet division, there is a green carpet of tea plants on small
hillocks. Natural reserved forests are great attractions. Migratory birds in winter, particularly
in the haor areas, are also very attractive in this area.
Ministry of Tourism and The Civil Aviation Ministry design national policies for the
development and promotion of tourism. The Ministry also maintains the Beautiful
Bangladesh campaign.( Wikipedia, 2013)
2.1.2 Forms of Tourism
There are different purposes of tour by the intended people. Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation
(2009) has classified the causes of tourism as tourism (site tourism), business, office, study,
religion, service and other purpose. Literature study reveals other types of tourism which are
termed as medical tourism, slum tourism, and halal tourism etc.
Major number of tourists visiting Bangladesh is for scenic beauty. Figure-2 is drawn from
Table 1. Around 46% (Figure-2) of total number of foreign tourists visiting Bangladesh in
2009 comes to enjoy natural. Second highest reason for tourists’ attraction is religious
interest. Bangladesh is a giant country in the Muslim world. Thousands of people visit
Bangladesh for religious purpose. She arranges the three-day Bishwa Ijtema each year
attracting people from around the world. According to GTA Muslims News & Resources
(2010), Bangladesh — Tens of Thousands (according to some report 4 million) Muslims
attended Tabligi Jamaat Ijtima in 2010 near the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka. In 2009,
around 41% (Figure 2) of total tourists come for religious purpose. Moreover, 3.36% for
business tourism, 2.42% for study tourism and 1.46% for office of total number tourists visit
Bangladesh in 2009.(Das & Chokroborty, 2013)
Among many reasons of tourism, visiting natural sites to enjoy scenic beauty is one. In 2009,
from a monthly analysis shows that tourist arrival for the reason of scenic beauty has an
increasing growth trend from (6.99%) in January to 40.06% in December 2009 (Table 4).
Huge natural attractions constitute this country as a paradise for the tourists both from home
and abroad. (Das & Chokroborty, 2013)
Based on our natural resources galore, strategic geographic location, distinct competitive
edge and comparative advantages- sectors like petrochemicals & its dependent industries, oil
refineries, pulp & paper industries, tourism & amusement industries, cement clinker, ship
building & repairing industries, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and its ancillary industries,
electrical & electronic industries, light engineering, leather & jute, melamine & ceramic
industries, power generation, water treatment industry, deep draft port, telecommunication,
composite textile & garments backward linkage industries, timber, agro processing and gas
based industries have huge prospects to grow in Bangladesh to cater to the vast domestic
market as well as to capitalize the privileged market access being enjoyed by Bangladesh
from developed countries through export (Chowdhury n.d.). This is why, the second highest
number of people visit Bangladesh for business purpose from across the world. Around
111,569 tourists in 2009 (Table 1) have visited Bangladesh for business purpose. Growth
rates fluctuate from a minimum (1.03%) in February to maximum 53.28% in October. (Das
& Chokroborty, 20
There are a number of global, international and multinational companies doing business in
Bangladesh. Of these, mentionable are A. K. Khan & Co. Ltd, Avery Dennison Bangladesh
Ltd., Berger Paints Bangladesh Limited, Bureau Veritas Consumer Products Services
(Bangladesh) Ltd., Novartis(Bangladesh) Limited and aamra, a collection of 14 companies,
involved in the Textiles and Apparels, Information & Communication Technologies and
Lifestyle Service sector in Bangladesh over the last22 years mentionable (Bangladesh Trade
Directory n.d.). Many high officials and delegates visit Bangladesh for operation of their
offices. In 2009, 3,895 tourists (Table 4) tour Bangladesh for official purpose. From monthly
analysis, it depicts that there is a rising growth rate of official tourists with some fluctuation
from (66.10%) in January to 23.92% in Decembe. (Das & Chokroborty, 2013)
Williams (2010) states that Educational tourism is tourist activity undertaken by those who
are undertaking an overnight vacation and those who are undertaking an excursion for whom
education and learning is a primary or secondary part of their trip. From table 4, it is found
that 6,475 tourists come to Bangladesh for education purpose in 2009. Universities arrange
many international seminars, conferences, and symposiums and attract academicians and
students seeking knowledge across the world. Moreover 26 public universities and 56 private
universities (Education Statistics 2005) attract people from around the world through their
exchange program. Monthly analysis shows that growth rate of tourists visiting study purpose
has a fluctuating trend from minimum (24.96%) in January to second highest at 11.66% in
November (Table 4). (Das & Chokroborty, 2013)
According to GTA Muslims News & Resources (n.d.), Bangladesh is the world's third-largest
Muslim- majority nation, with Muslims making up nearly 90 percent of its 144 million
populations. She arranges so many religious programs like Bishwa Ijtema which attract
Muslim around the world. Moreover there are a small number of people of Hinduism,
Christianity and Buddhism come to Bangladesh for religious interests. According to Parjatan
Corporation of Bangladesh, 8,983 tourists (Table 4) visit Bangladesh for religious purpose in
2009. (Das & Chokroborty, 2013)
Medical science could be a good source of medical tourism. Recently some international
standard hospitals are established in Bangladesh. These can make new horizon for medical
tourism. Though the medical tourism in Bangladesh is not well recognized, it may create a
great opportunity in near future. The other wing of medical tourism is online medical service
which is big online database providing necessary information to attract people to come to the
country in person. Bangladesh has two hospitals in online medical tourism database namely
United Hospital Bangladesh and Apollo Hospital Dhaka (Discover Medical Tourism n.d.).
(Das & Chokroborty, 2013)
Other forms of tourism includes Bicycle touring, Boat sharing, Cultural tourism, Rural
tourism, River cruise, Nautical tourism, Jihadi tourism, Halal tourism, Sports tourism, Slum
tourism, Virtual tourism, Walking tourism, Wildlife tourism and Water tourism. Very often,
people come for short visit. Meeting relatives, participating sports and international
awareness program etc. cause people to travel across the world. In 2009, 13,286 tourists
(Table 4) visit Bangladesh for these purposes. (Das & Chokroborty, 2013)
2.1.3 Tourism Sites in Bangladesh
There are many tourist spots in Dhaka division. Mentionable spots are Ahsan Manjil, Lalbag
Fort, Bangabandhu Memorial Museum, National Zoo, Botanical Garden, National Museum,
Parliament House, Sonargaon, National Martyrs Memorial, Jamuna Bridge, Nawab Palace,
Tungipara, Vasani Novo Theater and Trisal etc. All these places attract people from accross
Chittagong is the commercial capital of Bangladesh. It is full of natural beauty. The
mentionable tourism spots in Chittagong are Fay’s Lake, Patenga, Port Area, Bandarban,
Marine Academy, Sitakundu, Parki Beach, Cox's Bazar Himchori & Inani Beach,
Moheshkhali Island, Sonadia Island, St. Mrtins Island, Nijhum Island, Teknaf, Hill tracks
Rangamati, Cheera Island, Ramu (Buddhist village), Mainamati, Laboni beach, and Shrine of
Bayazid Bostami etc.
People from all over the world, with archaeological interest come at Rajshahi. Some
mentionable places are Mahasthangarh, Paharpur Buddhist Monastery, Kantajee's Temple,
Ramshagor Dighi, Shopnopuri, and Shilaidaha Kutibari etc.
Khulna is another port city of Bangladesh. It is vested with a large sea port Mongla. Business
men often tour to Khulna for Business purpose. Other than that, people with interest in scenic
beauty go there to observe mangrove forest Sundarban and Shat Gambuj Mosque etc.
Moreover, Kuakata, locally known as Sagar Kannya (Daughter of the Sea) is a rare scenic
beauty spot on the southernmost tip of Bangladesh.
Sylhet is another division of Bangladesh having so many spots to welcome tourists from
across the country as well as from all over the world. The Shrine of Hazrat ShahJalal, Sri
Chaitannya Dev Temple, Srimongol, Madhabkunda Waterfall, Tea Estate, Sylhet Lawacherra
National Forest, Kean Bridge, Jaflong, Historical watch, Tribal villages, Haripur Oil Field,
and Tanguar Haor are mostly visited place by tourists.
Barisal is another division with some places of interests. Many people vistits these place
throughout the year. Among the places Sagardari (Birth place of modern Bengali poet
Michael Madhusudhan Datta) is the most visited place.
2.2 Most famous Tourist spot in Bangladesh
2.2.1 Cox’s Bazar
Miles of golden sands, towering cliffs, surfing waves, rare conch shells, colorful pagodas,
Buddhist temples and tribes, delightful sea-food--this is Cox's Bazar, the tourist capital of
Bangladesh. Having the world's longest (120 kilometers.) beach sloping gently down to the
blue waters of the Bay of Bengal, Cox's Bazar is one of the most attractive tourist spot in the
country. It’s also a tropical paradise. There is hot sun with fun, sandy beaches and Enjoyable
Beachcombers paradise, having world’s longest beach stretch of beach sloping gently into the
blue waters of the Bay Of Bengal. A chain of green hills covered by deep reserve forests,
serve as picturesque background to the beach. The range of hills runs parallel to the beach for
about 96 km. At low tide, a jeep can drive on the sand for quite a distance. The wide beach is
endowed with silvery golden sand. The sea is good bathing and swimming as it is free from
sharks. The beach is good for bathing, sunbathing and swimming. The breath-taking beauty
of the sun setting behind the waves of the sea is captivating.
The surrounding area, adjacent to the Chittagong hill tracts, runs south down the coastline to
the Myanmar border. This is still a relatively sparsely populated pant of country. The
population of the region is about one million and is a mix of Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists.
The culture here is less overtly Muslim, or even Hindu for that matter, having a more
Burmese- Buddhist atmosphere.
It is intrigued by the high-powered wooden fishing boats chugging along the seashore, head
to the Bakhali River on the north side of town. The river port positively teems with different
types of craft. There are several boatyards on the shore, where ships are built using methods
that haven't changed much in centuries. Given piracy is on the rise in the Bay of Bengal
there's the possibility that might be the real things.
2.2.2 Location of Cox’s Bazar
The available land area of Cox’s Bazar is about 150 acres. Geographically Cox's Bazar is
located in Southeast region of the country at a distance of 152 km. south from Chittagong, the
leading seaport of Bangladesh, and 400 km. from capital Dhaka by road and only twenty
minutes by air. It is connected both by air and road from Dhaka and Chittagong. The Height
above the sea level of it is 3 meters.
Cox's Bazar Arguably the most attractive tourist resort of the country located on a low range
of sand hills between the river bakkhali and the bay of bengal with a long open beach towards
the sea. Cox’s Bazar divided into seven upazillas. 50% of this areas are accompanied with
small and big hills tracts.
2.2.3 Places of Tourist Attraction-Cox's Bazar
Cox's Bazar is charmingly situated on low range of sand hills between the Baghkhali and the
Bay of Bengal with a long open beach towards the sea. The town is named after lieutenant
Cox, who died here in 1799 after he had established a colony of Mogh who sought shelter in
British territory after the conquest of Arakan by the Burmese two third of the population of
the town are descendants of these refugees. Miles of golden sands towering cliffs, pagodas,
Buddhist temples and tribes, delightful seafood this is Cox's Bazar, the tourist capital of
Bangladesh. Having the world's longest (120-km) beach slopping gently down to the blue
waters of the Bay of Bengal. Cox's Bazar is one of the most attractive tourist spots in the
This is a typical Buddhist village, about 10km. from Cox's Bazar, on the main road to
Chittagong, there are Monasnesties, Khyangs and Pagodas containing images of Buddha in
gold, bronze and metals inlaid with precious stones. One of the most interesting of these
temples is on the bank of the Baghkhali River. It houses not only interesting relics and
Burmese handicrafts but also a large bronze statue of Buddha measuring thirteen feet high
and high and rests on a six feet high pedestal. The wood carving of this Khyang is very
delicate and refined. The village has a charm of its own. Weavers ply their trade in open
workshop and craftsman make handmade cigars in their pagoda like houses.
10 kilometers by speedboat to the north west of Cox's Bazar and standing on a hill is the
Moheskhali island. There is a 165 years old temple known as Adinath temple. With the
interesting history of its discovery, it is a most attractive spot especially during the festive
month of falgoon (march-April) when sea fishing near the Moheskhali Island is a rewarding
18 kilometers south from the Cox's Bazar beach is a beautiful picnic and shooting spot. It is a
continuation of the beach with background of palms and bamboo's. the famous "Broken hill"
is a rare sight. Angling in the streams and ponds in the adjoining valley provides a lot of fun
and excitement another charms is the "Christmas trees".
Inani about 32 kilometers to the south of Cox's Bazar and just on the beach, with the sea to
the west and a background of steep hills to the east, in 210-14' N latitude and 920-03' E,
longitude. It is only half an hour's drive from Cox's bazaar and an ideal place for hunting, sea
bathing and picnic.
80 kilometers south of Cox's Bazar is a pleasure spot on the West Bank of Naf river. A small
town, it has arrangements for picnic hunting and boating. A trip by jeep to Teknaf from Cox's
Bazar at dawn is a rare experience.
2.3 Saint Martin
This small island about 10km (6mi) south-west of the southern tip of the mainland is a
tropical cliché and the only coral island in the country, with beaches fringed with coconut
palms and bountiful marine life. It's a clean and peaceful place with nothing more strenuous
to do than soak up the rays. Even mosquitoes are a rarity. There's a naval base near the center
of the island, and the USA looked into setting up one of their own a few years back. The
island was devastated by a cyclone in 1991 but has fully recovered, and was untouched by the
It's possible to walk around the island in a day since it measures only 8 sq km (3 sq mi),
shrinking to about 5 sq km (2 sq mi) during high tide. Most of islands 7000 inhabitants live
primarily from fishing, and between October and April fisher people from neighboring areas
bring their catch to the islands temporary wholesale market. Rice and coconuts the other
staple crops, and algae is collected and dried from the sea rocks and sold for consumption to
Most things are centered on the far north of the island, with the center and south being mostly
farmland and makeshift huts. There is no electricity on the island, though the larger hotels run
generators in the evenings for a few hours. November to February is the main tourist season
with the best weather.
Getting to Saint Martins Island is a three-step program. First you'll need to fly or bus it down
to Cox's Bazar, and then catch a bus to Teknaf, which is right on the very tip of Bangladesh,
sandwiched up against Myanmar. From Teknaf, ferries run daily to Saint Martin Island and
take around 3 hours.
The total distance from Dhaka to the island is 510km (316mi). Ferries leave the island
around 3PM. For the regular Eagle ferries don't need to prebook, but if one taking the more
reliable Keari Sindbad ferry and don't have a roundtrip ticket they can book the return leg at
the Keari Marzaan restaurant, just before Saint Martin's Resort off the main road. The
restaurant itself only caters to daytrippers on tours arranged by Keari Tours. The one-way
fare is Tk 350.
Arriving from the port tourist should walk through a strip of basic restaurants and shops, and
hit a t-junction. Left will take one to the eastern beaches (the cement ends shortly before the
scuba dive center), while a right turn will take along the main cement 'road' where most of the
hotels and guesthouses are, ending at the north-west part of the island.
At one point a left turn leads around the newly built hospital and into the center of the island.
It's an interesting walk and eventually leads out to the western beach just north of the Sea
Turtle Hatchery, after a couple wrong turns.
Flatbed cycle-rickshaws are the only transport aside from walking. There are no motorized
vehicles on the island, not even motorcycles.
2.3 Political instability
Political instability is defined as a situation of a country where a government has been
collapsed, or is directed by group following a coup, or where fundamental practical requisites
for social-order manage and continuance is unsteady and sporadically interrupted. It has
multifaceted and complex natures and impact in many countries worldwide.(Hai & Chik,
2.3.1 A FEW EXAMPLES OF POLITICAL VULNERABILITY:
Researchers has explored examples of highly publicized political conflicts including the 1991
disintegration of Yugoslavia and the ensuing war in Bosnia-Herzegovina together with racial,
ethnic and religious conflicts in Burundi, Haiti, India, Pakistan, Rwanda, Somalia and South
Africa. Other cases include student uprisings in China and North Korea, and the ongoing
Arab-Israeli conflict in the Middle East. (Hai & Chik, 2011)
Cambodia suffered for decade’s long guerrilla fighting and it could not focus on tourism
development. After rescued from that destructive situation the country started to advance at
least in the tourism sector rapidly. In 1998, Cambodia received ninety-six thousand tourists
and in 2006, Cambodia received about two million tourists. Although, the only tourism
product in Cambodia is its cultural heritage, and the Angkor Wat -- an 11th century temple
still it earned $1 billion from tourism in 2006. (Hai & Chik, 2011)
B) Sri Lanka
Nearly two decades long political violence and guerrilla fighting pushed the country into
frustrating level in the tourist arrivals even though it has everything what are needed for
tourism development. Sri Lanka hopes that it will soon deluge over its difficulties that have
been plaguing the island nation for decades and will take steps to lure Indian visitors with
tours like Ramayana Trail. A senior officer Shafraz Farook remarks that they will offer new
and more enchanting tourism products to showcase Sri Lanka as a land that has a lot more to
offer than just beaches. (Hai & Chik, 2011)
Although Nepal is a growing tourist nation in the recent time but it passed a bad tenure with
much chaos, anarchy and violence that stuck the inflow of tourists. In 2001, Maoists started
ruling many distant areas of Nepal and violence spiraled all over the country showing the
negative sign in tourism, this can be seen on this year’s tourist arrival data. The tourist inflow
started to increase in 2003 due to cease-fire by Maoists and Nepal Army. Therefore, it simply
proves, peace means more tourism business for Nepal. (Hai & Chik, 2011)
Fig: Tourists arrival from year 1990 to 2005in Nepal
Thailand, a country of rising tourist nation in Asia has also hit by the political disturbances in
2009 and 2010. In both the second quarter of 2009 and the second quarter of 2010 show the
influence of political riots and uncertainty. It has been figured out that Thailand missed out
on in between 1 and 2 million potential extra visitors in both 2009 and 2010. (Hai & Chik,
Fig: Annual growth in real GDP in Thailand: Q1 2008 - Q1 2010
Chapter 3: Discussion
3.1 Political Instability and Bangladesh
Bangladesh starts its journey in 1972 after earning glorious but costly independence from
Pakistan.Unfortunately, tourism is one of the most neglected sectors till today, though the
government keeps on focusing . Asia has done well, for example, Thailand earns per
head of US$ 157 yearly in tourism (2004). Compared to other countries, Bangladesh has
shown the worst performance in tourism, with less than US$ 0.5 per capita which compares
with Sri Lanka at $ 26 and India at $ 6. This disappointing growth in tourism is not only for
poor marketing alone. Even though, weak Nation Branding is a strong factor, there are many
other factors like; unavailable attractive hotel resorts, poor infrastructure and disappointing
customer service are responsible.(Islam, 2008)
The tourism sector of Bangladesh is persuasive for attention that has the largest mangrove
forest in the world the Sundarbans, the fine-looking hills in Rangamati, the exotic tea gardens
in Sylhet, the fantastic lifestyle of the indigenous people in the Chittagong Hill Tracts and
Bandarban, the centuries old archeological structures belonging to the Maharajas of past
civilizations, the eye-catchy natural scenery in Foy's Lake, and the longest unbroken natural
sandy sea beach in the whole planet in Cox's Bazaar. And this is just to name a few
attractions that justify Bangladesh’s marvelous potentiality for becoming a superb
international tourist hotspot but, in reality, that is not exactly the case.(Quader, 2009). The
major obstacles for Bangladesh as a vibrant international tourist destination are political
instability and insecurity. Efficient security services are pre-condition for modern tourism.
Feel unsafe in Bangladesh is a great barrier that discourages not only foreign but also local
tourists (Quader, 2009). "lonelyplanet," comments about Bangladesh: "Discover how special
this country is before the tourist hordes catch on," and something like: "Beware of political
instability." Both the comments are true, and it is obvious, foreign tourists do not prefer to
visit amidst such political instability (Quader, 2009).
The U.S. says, Ambassador Butenis wants for Bangladesh ‘the same things that most
Bangladeshis want: a country free from political and terrorist violence, a strong democracy
that resolves disputes through non-violent means.’ A local human rights organization
explores that over three-hundred people were killed and nearly ninethousand others were
injured in politically motivated violence during 2005 . In 2006, the country experienced
terrible labor unrest of causing 300 factories damaging, nearly 100 million dollars loss and
hundreds of death and injuries. In addition that, sea and air ports were mostly in stagnant
position due to political anarchy and chaos in that period and it is very normal scenario in
every regime. Political chaos is so sensitive no foreign tourist want to spoil his/her
holidays/vacation in visiting the uncertainties.
3.2 CHRONOLOGY OF POLITICAL SCENARIO OF BANGLADESH
Year Incident Consequence
2001 High Court gave death
penalty on 12 ex -army
officers for killing Mujib.
Seven killed in bomb blast
at a Bengali New Year
program in Dhaka.
2001 Bomb kills 10 at a church
and at Awami league office
in Dhaka kills 22.
Unrest situation was going
on for a few months
2001 Eight people are killed and
hundreds injured as two
bombsexplode at a rally in
south –west area
Agitation and conflicts are
focused in dailies and
political turmoil conditions
2002 Bomb blasts in cinemas north
of Dhaka kill 17 and injure
Agitation and conflicts
2004 Bomb attack on Muslim
shrine in Sylhet kills two
and injures UK high
commissioner and 50 others.
Opposition calls 21 general
strikes over the course of
the year as part of a
campaign to oust the
2004 Grenade attack on Awami
League rally in Dhaka kills
Hartal, strikes are called
2005 Ex minister AMS Kibria is
killed in a grenade attack at a
The party calls a general
strike in protest.
2005 Around 350 small bombs go
off in towns and cities
Two people are killed and
more than 100 are injured.
2006 Labor violent protests
damaged hundreds of
A 14-party alliance
officials to be oust.
2006 Election date set at 22
January. Awami alliance says
it will be boycott the polls.
Blockade paralyses the
country. Garments labors’
strikes turns into riot and
devastating damage of
2007 A state of emergency is
declared amd. Fakhruddin
takes over as head of
Six Islamist militants
convicted of countrywide
bomb attacks in 2005 are
2007 Sheikh Hasina is charged
with murder. Begum Khaleda
Zia is under virtual house
arrest. Several other
politicians are held in an anti
Government imposes a
curfew on Dhaka and five
other cities amid violent
clashes between police and
students demanding an end
to emergency rule.
2009 Sheikh Hasina sworn in as
Around 74 people, mainly
army officers, are killed in a
mutiny by border guards
2009 The High Court decides that
it was the father of PM
Sheikh Hasina, who proc
Laimed independence from
Pakistan in 1971.
he government bans the
local branch of the global
Islamist organization Hizb
-ut Tahrir, saying it poses a
threat to peace
Note: Modified from BBC’s historical chart for Bangladesh (2010)
3.3 SWOT Analysis of Tourism Development in Bangladesh
On the basis of primary and secondary data we have done the following SWOT analysis:
Bangladesh is unique for its natural resources.
She has the largest sea beach in the world.
Bangladesh is renowned for its archaeological and historical places.
she has unique natural beauty and greenery.
Nation famous for hospitality.
Rich cultural heritage and religious harmony.
Bangladesh can be reached by air from any part of the world. Biman, the Bangladesh
Airlines connects Dhaka with about 30 major cities of the world.
She has the accommodation facilities available throughout the country. Sheraton,
Radisson, westin and Panpacific hotel chains are in operation in the capital city.
Tourism sites are not properly explored, extracted and managed.
Lack of investment.
Low quality services.
Lack of safety, security and hygiene.
Lack of infrastructural development.
Visa requirement and complex visa procedures.
Absence of sales plan and public relation activities.
Lack of private initiatives in tourism development.
Bangladesh cannot offer tourist products and destination packages exclusively to local
and foreign tourists. As a result, tourists have to go back to their home with low level
The number of supply chain member in the tourism industry is not sufficient to build
up a strong base.
Small number of tour operators, inefficient national airlines, and insignificant role of
Shortage of professional guides.
Price of some tourism components like the star and standards hotel rooms, food items,
package tours and river cruise programs are much higher than those of neighboring
countries like India and Nepal.
Lacking of promotional and marketing activities of tourism by both public and private
Due to globalization scope for dissemination of information and communication
Scope of making the tourist spots more attractive.
Research and development to attract more tourist and making favorable tourism
Development of tourism culture.
Arrangement of international events like World Cup Cricket.
Political Instability of the country.
Harassment by the police and the broker in the airport.
Language barrier of the people of the country.
Conservative social and religious systems.
Strong competition within the region, barriers to overcome the image crisis of the
Lack of awareness among the mass people regarding the benefits of tourism both
Illegal hunting and fishing in Sundarbans create loss of valuable wildlife.
Absence of sufficient trained safe guards in the beaches to aware and save the tourists
in case of emergency.
Shortage of sufficient accommodation, food and beverage services and other
Tourists presently hold misconceptions about Bangladesh as a tourist’s destinations.
Foreigners now know Bangladesh as a country of poverty, baggers, flood, political
unrest and corruption
Absence of proper tourism policy
Political collision between tribal and Bengali people(Tuhin & Majumder, 2013)
Chapter 4: Conclusion & Recommendations
The Bangladesh tourism industry could not even dig its roots in the last four decades as the
country experienced severe political unrest, strikes, hartals and conflicts. Directly political
instability creates an image of lawlessness and terrorism and indirectly it damages economic
growth and hinders the development of infrastructure and in both the cases, tourists perceive
the destination negatively. The government, tourist service providers, investors and mass
people of the country need to realize the present long earned negative country image and to
be sincere for replacing the culture with empathically nurtured political atmosphere. Good
communications based on the principles of honesty and transparency together with
communications, promotion, security and market research are the key to successful strategy
for crisis management . To achieve these targets, the country needs to chalk out a down-to-
earth tourism marketing and country image building strategy and go for aggressive marketing
in countries, which produce most of the outbound tourists.
Political instability seems to be a chronic problem for Bangladesh. Since independence, the
country has been suffering from political conflict, violence, strikes, civil unrest and weak
governance that made her image gloomy. Warm relationships among parties, patience
conduct with oppositions, constructive criticism to the government and peaceful co-existence
within versatile groups are needed to nurture in political culture in the country. Nevertheless,
a strategic management approach for dealing with tourism crises is the key to speedy
recovery. Managers and policy makers need to be sincere to incorporate the strategic
planning process into their industry to manage and alleviate the negative impact of these
It is therefore, becoming more and more important to analyze negative events from every
angle, to systematically identify critical success factors, to integrate them and take them into
account when considering strategic corporate orientation (Glaesser, 2005). The country
should make new laws with provision to deal promptly with emerging conditions at various
tourist places that could arrange protection of all tourists, with additional emphasis on foreign
nationals. If special security forces are developed for that purpose in Bangladesh, it would
increase the confidence of the tourists. (Hasan, 2009)
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