Tourism sector enjoying growth despite sanctions: min.

TEHRAN, Oct. 03 (MNA) – The Minister of Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Ali Asghar Mounesan told Mehr News on Sat. that tourism sector had a growth in last year despite all the events including US sanctions which could affect this sector.

Speaking to Mehr News correspondent on Saturday afternoon while visiting the MNA HQ, Minister of Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Ali Asghar Mounesan talked briefly about the role of the ministry in the development of tourism industry and increase of foreign tourists despite US sanctions.

"I am glad to inform you that the tourism sector of the country tried to minimize the effects of sanctions on this sector with the efforts of all activists in this field. In the last Iranian calendar year 1398 (ended on March 20, 2020), despite the fact that we faced the coronavirus crisis in the last two months of the year, 8,800,000 tourists were registered. The figure indicates an increase compared to the corresponding period in the last Iranian calendar year 1391 (ended on March 20, 2013)," he said.

"Last year, in addition to the sanctions, many other events happened in the country, including floods at the beginning of the year, the martyrdom of Lt. Gen. Soleimani and the tragic accident of the Ukrainian plane, each of which could have dealt a fatal blow to the tourism industry. But fortunately, as statistics show, we had a growth in this sector last year despite all the events," he added.

The minister went on to say, "Therefore, tourism is one of the important economic sectors. One of the important things we did in this area was to diversify tourism services. Previously, most of our foreign tourists were interested in cultural and historical fields. Now, due to the efforts made, the health tourism, ecotourism and nature tourism sectors have greatly improved. Recently, sectors such as agricultural tourism and mining tourism have been added to this area."

"In 2019, our share of the country's GDP was $ 11.8 billion. Unfortunately, one of the things that has recently fluctuated the foreign exchange market is the loss of foreign tourists in the last nine months due to the coronavirus," Mounesan noted.

"Therefore, the tourism sector has been able to play its role well due to the existing capacities in the country, including Iranian customs, climatic diversity and precious cultural heritage," he  added.

Interview by Zahra Mirzafarjouyan

News Code 164273


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