Turkey aims to become top 3 destination for tourists
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
Turkey is aiming to explore new markets in Far East countries, as part of its strategy to become a top three tourism destination, the country’s culture and tourism minister said on Nov. 2.
“We are determining three major strategies. One of them is to explore new markets in Far East countries such as China, India, South Korea, Japan, Indonesia and Malaysia,” Numan Kurtulmuş told Anadolu Agency.
He asserted that the Far Eastern countries were “long forgotten” in tourism and said Turkey is aiming to “open up new doors.”
“In India there is a 350 million middle-class population, which is an enormous power with newly flourished, great purchase value.
In China, there is over 300 million middle-class population. Thus we will enhance our relations with these countries,” he said.
Kurtulmuş also reminded that it will be the “year of Turkey” in China during 2018 with 50 events planned.
Turkey is currently ranked sixth in the tourism sector and the country displays a performance that could place it among top three destinations in the next 10 years, the minister said.
“We will increase our support by 20 percent to some countries, where we could attract tourists from... Through the decision would be taken by the Cabinet in early November, we will allow early reservation opportunity for tourism operators bringing foreign tourists,” Kurtulmuş said.
“World economy is growing by 2.5 percent each year, while tourism sector is growing by 3.1 percent. In the next 10 years, tourism sector is likely to grow 3.9 percent when considering the current numbers,” he added.
The number of tourists visiting Turkey increased by 40 percent in September compared to the same month last year, Kurtulmuş said a day earlier.
Speaking at a tourism forum in the Turkish capital, Ankara, the minister said 26.06 million tourists visited Turkey in the first nine-month period.
“In September alone, 4 million new tourists came to Turkey, which is 40 percent higher than September last year,” he said.
More than 4 million Russian tourists came to Turkey in the first nine months of the year, while the number of visitors from Germany hit almost 3 million over the same period.
By the end of 2017, 31.4 million foreigners are expected to visit Turkey, bringing the country’s annual tourism revenues to a possible $25.1 billion.