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APPLICATION OF TRAVEL COST METHOD TO ASSESS THE PRICING POLICY OF PUBLIC PARKS: THE CASE OF KAZIRANGA NATIONAL PARK

Abinash Bharali () and Ritwik Mazumder ()
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Abinash Bharali: Assam University, Postal: Assam University, Silchar
Ritwik Mazumder: Assam University, Postal: Assam University, Silchar

Journal of Regional Development and Planning, 2012, vol. 1, issue 1, 41-50

Abstract: National parks are established to preserve wildlife or biodiversity. But conservation often displaces local communities and has the potential of raising their distress levels. “Ecotourism” helps in the conservation of natural resources or services and raises the standards of living of the local people. But unregulated tourism creates problems in preservation of the wildlife of public parks especially in developing countries. In recent years Kaziranga National Park has faced these problems and the park authority may possibly use revenue maximizing entry fee as an effective instrument. In this study the Zonal Travel Cost method is used to estimate the revenue maximization entry fee. The study is based on primary data collected from 300 visitors during the winter of 2010-11. The total recreational value of the park is estimated at ` 773.45 million. Revenue maximization entry is estimated at ` 187.6 per visitor per visit assuming zero entry fees. By introducing this revenue maximization entry fee the park authority can ease the tourist pressure to a certain extent. The additional revenues may be used for conservation of the wildlife and biodiversity. By conducting well-crafted publicity campaign for other parks and sanctuaries in Assam it is possible to divert a large chunk of visitors towards other national parks. This would generate additional funds that can be directed towards the preservation of the wildlife and biodiversity.

Keywords: Biodiversity; Conservation; Valuation; Kaziranga; Travel Cost (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q51 Q57 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2012
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