"The study is over and the first report shows that in the past three years, the total number of tourism units in the state has jumped from 3,100 units to 5,000 units," said Anil Kumar.

Elaborating the concept of units, the tourism minister said one unit represents either a home stay, a house boat, a resort or a hotel. "Just look into the numbers and see the difference. It clearly shows that the investment in the tourism industry be it a home stay or a resort or a houseboat, has gone up drastically.

"Details of the study are awaited but the first report indicates that the tourism is growing like never before and investments are coming in. If the industry is stagnant, would it grow like this," asked the minister.

According to the figures by the state planning board, this is the fastest growing industry in Kerala as the in-flow of tourists into the state jumped from a mere 5.1 million in 1997 to 10.8 million in 2012. This includes the arrival of foreign tourists from 1.8 lakh to around eight lakh during the same period.

The total earnings from tourism which includes foreign exchange earnings grew from Rs 3,067 crore in 2008 to Rs 4,572 crore in 2012 while the earnings from domestic tourists jumped from Rs 6,832 crore to Rs10,883 crore.

"We are coming out with a novel project and it has been named as god's own countries, people's own tourism. The final details are being worked out and I will announce the details of the project in the assembly very soon," said Anil Kumar.


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