Armenia’s Tourism Committee preparing for tourist season: Russia among targeted countries
YEREVAN, MARCH 15, ARMENPRESS. The Tourism Committee of Armenia is preparing for the tourist season. Acting chairman of the Committee Alfred Kocharyan told Armenpress that they are developing a marketing strategy, outlining the directions and their future plans. Although they are engaged in an active work, they have to be flexible as all the programs can change at any moment conditioned by coronavirus.
“The pandemic is not over yet, therefore, we need to take this into account. In any case we are preparing for the tourism seasons, we are working with the countries from where tourist flows are possible at this stage”, he said.
At this moment, he stated, Russia is among the targeted countries from where tourist flow is possible: here the Committee plans to implement a number of marketing programs. In particular, the MITT international travel and tourism trade show opens in Moscow on March 16, and Armenia will also take part in the event. The Tourism Committee will be present at the event with more than 20 tourism companies during which they will present Armenia’s tourism opportunities with a broad scope.
“I will also meet with my Russian counterpart to discuss issues relating to the sector, to understand what actions we can take for ensuring bilateral tourism flows. We are planning to invite journalists, bloggers from Russia to Armenia. The goal is to raise awareness among Russians”, Alfred Kocharyan said.
In line with this, Armenia is also considering other markets where the COVID-19 situation is similar to the one here. For instance Ukraine, which doesn’t require COVID-19 test from Armenian tourists, insurance for COVID-19 is enough. The Tourism Committee of Armenia is drafting proposals for presenting them to the government so that Armenia will be able to host the Ukrainians with the same terms.
“Iran is also under consideration. I would like to state that I had meetings on this direction as well, we plan to restore the land flows. I can also mention the Arabic countries. We are drafting a proposal for restoring the visa regime in these directions”, he said, adding that they are working in parallel with the coronavirus situation, making the public health as a priority.
The Tourism Committee is also developing programs for domestic tourism. In particular, a major tourism exhibition is expected to open in Yerevan in May, where Armenia’s provinces will be represented in separate pavilions. The goal is to present the tourism potential of the country’s provinces to the broad public.
Alfred Kocharyan stated that in 2020 Armenia’s tourism sector registered over 80% decline, just 375 tourists visited the country. He highlighted the government’s coronavirus response programs and stated that these programs are being revised, discussions are being held and decisions are made based on the situation.
Interview by Anna Gziryan
Editing and Translating by Aneta Harutyunyan