The state tourism board of Odisha has confirmed to organise the Odisha Travel Bazaar in partnership with the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) to showcase and promote the state as a travel destination both in India and overseas markets commencing from 15 – 17 October in Bhuvaneshwar.Announcing the tour, Ashok Chandra Panda, Minister for Tourism & Culture, Odisha said that this Travel Bazar will help to unlock tourism potential that Odisha has to showcase with its rich natural and cultural heritage. A promotional campaign of “Look towards East” will serve to the highly progressive tourism policy of the state which offers many subsidies and incentives to investors for setting up hotels, eco-tourism and adventure tourism projects.The department is to spend nearly 1.5 crores in this 3-day event.Nitin B Jawale, Director & Additional Secretary – Tourism, Odisha, said that the state is all set to join “the big league of states” in terms of tourism shortly as visitor footfall into the state is growing year on year. They are also working on implementing better connectivity by rail, air and road for both domestic and foreign tourists. He added that the government has identified around 100 tourist spots in the country comprising beaches, nature trails, wildlife and adventure sports, etc. for developing good tourism infrastructure.JK Mohanty, Chairman Tourism Panel, FICCI Odisha State Council, and Chairman, Swosti Group of Hotel actively supported that the state is keen on developing tourism and that sort of commitment requires support from the travel industry.Dr Jyotsna Suri, Chairperson, Tourism Committee of FICCI, said that the decision of the state to forge the partnership with FICCI for the Travel Mart shows its strong commitment and seriousness to develop tourism. The state, she noted, is endowed with rich natural and cultural heritage.Odisha has over 480 km of coastline and about 35% of the total land area is under forest cover, highest for any mainstream state in the country. Odisha is all set to leverage this natural wealth for tourism and grow tourism by leaps and bounds in coming years.