Greece and Iran Lay Foundations for Cooperation in Tourism
Strengthening the foundations of Greece-Iran tourism ties was the focus of a recent meeting between Alternate Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura and Iran’s Vice President and Head of Tourism Organization, Dr. Masoud Soltanifar, in Tehran.
The meeting took place on the sidelines of the Tehran International Tourism Exhibition (TITE), which opened on Tuesday and sees the first-time participation of the Greek National Tourism Organisation (GNTO) with its own stand.
During the meeting, which took place one week after the official visit of Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to Iran, the policies of both countries for increasing tourist arrivals and attracting investment were presented. Dr Soltanifar proposed for both sides to strengthen cooperation in order to send more tourists to each other’s countries. He also suggested the launch of communication actions that would bring the Greeks and Iranians more closer.
On her part, Minister Kountoura referred to Greece’s opening in the Iranian market as a “strategic option”, one that can be confirmed by the country’s first appearance in the Iranian expo, the increased interest of the Iranians to visit Greece and the significant contribution of direct flights between the two countries.
She noted that culture is the predominant basis for cooperation since both countries are homes and birthplaces of ancient civilizations. At this point, Ms Kountoura referred to Greece’s targeted promotion of thematic forms of tourism to attract high income and special interest visitors throughout the year.
On Tuesday and accompanied by GNTO Secretary General Dimitris Tryfonopoulos, Minister Kountoura attended the opening ceremony of TITE 2016 and visited the Greek pavilion where she had the chance to exchange views with Greek tourism professionals.
She also presented the dynamics of the Greek tourism market at the 2nd Greek Tourism Workshop held on the sidelines of TITE 2016 and that saw the participation of tourism businesses from both countries.
On Wednesday, scheduled B2B meetings between Greek businessmen and Iranian tour operators will take place at the Greek stand.