The northern port city of Thessaloniki will host the 8th UNWTO International Meeting on Silk Road Tourism, the biggest biennial event of the UNWTO Silk Road program, between October 9 and 12, 2018.
The UNWTO Silk Road Program is a collaborative initiative designed to enhance sustainable tourism development along the historic Silk Road route. Attended by over 25 Silk Road countries, the meeting is an important event for ministers, high level officials and experts to debate challenges and accord opportunities for successfully developing tourism along the maritime and continental Silk Road.
Regarding the selection of Greece as the host venue for the meeting, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) executive director for technical cooperation and services, Zhu Shanzhong, in a letter congratulated Greek Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura. “We consider Greece an excellent partner and your contribution is highly appreciated by the UNWTO and the UNWTO Western Silk Road program,” Shanzhong said.
He also referred to the minister’s efforts to constitute Greece as one of the most popular western Silk Road destinations and noted that the program coincides with the ministry’s efforts to make Greece a 365-days-a-year destination.
The 8th UNWTO International Meeting on Silk Road Tourism is expected to positively affect tourism in the region. Central Macedonia Governor Apostolos Tzitzikostas said the region will jointly work with all participant tourism bodies to promote the area on an international level. “We believe in the power of collaboration and in the competitiveness of the tourism sector,” he added.
The Region of Central Macedonia, the European Interscience Silk Road Center of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, the Thessaloniki Convention Bureau (TCB) and the Ministry of Tourism jointly worked towards winning the tender for the event.
“Our successful claim seals our substantial collaboration with the local authorities regarding activities of common interest to promote the city’s tourism,” TCB President Yiannis Aslanis said, also underlining the contribution of Greek carrier AEGEAN in the successful result of the tender.