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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Iran, Turkey to boost tourism cooperation

Ankara, Turkey, Dec 2, IRNA - Head of the Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization Hamid Baqaei said here on Wednesday that Iran’s free zones boast of higher potentials and capabilities which can be exploited by establishing airlinks.
In a meeting with Turkish Culture Minister Ertugral Gunay, he added that tourism, in fact, is a kind of economic transaction. Iran and Turkey should reach equilibrium in this respect.

Stating that more than one million Iranians visit Turkey each year, he noted the number of Turkish visitors to Iran is one third of that figure.

Now that the two countries are set to develop bilateral cultural ties, a balance in the number of the two countries’ tourists is of paramount significance, he underlined.

Given the fact that there is no problem in issuing visas for the two states, the balance will hopefully be achieved, Baqaei noted.

Iran has set up 1,000 exemplary tourist sites, he said, declaring the country’s readiness to absorb foreign investors and setting up a joint bank with Turkey.

The official further noted that Iran and Turkey enjoy proximity since the ancient times and hoped that cultural steps such as holding exhibitions will promote affinity between them.

Gunay, for his part, said that some seven million people travel to Turkey each year, one million of which are Iranians.

Referring to the similarities between the tourism sites of the two countries, he said that serious steps should be taken in line with enhancing interactions.

Paving the grounds for establishing airlinks from Iran’s tourist sites to Turkey will help boost two-way tourism ties, he said.
Source : IRNA

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