Turkey’s tourism minister expects revenue to grow in 2018

Published on : Thursday, November 9, 2017

Turkey's tourismTurkey’s tourism sector expects to see revenues grow to $30 billion in 2018, assisted by planned new incentives for tour operators and rising visitor numbers. The country’s tourism minister, Numan Kurtulmus, said this yesterday.

Increased security fears following an attempted coup and a series of militant attacks greatly affected Turkey’s tourism revenues in 2016 going down to $22.11 billion from $31.46 billion in 2015.

But numbers turned around in April, thanks to a surge in Russian tourists following an improvement in relations between Moscow and Ankara. The third quarter of 2017 showed a recovery of nearly 40 percent year-on-year.

“We are expecting 31.4 million visitors this year, and from that, revenue of $26 billion,” Kurtulmus told Reuters during a visit to London. In 2018, this would rise to 37 million to 38 million visitors, generating revenue of $30 billion, Kurtulmus said.

Turkey’s finance ministry in October predicted that tourism would generate $20 billion of revenue in 2017.

Turkey also hopes to become a greater health and sports tourism destination, and to revive cruise travel, which suffered after security reasons and operators cancelling trips in recent years.

“We are working with other countries around the Mediterranean to come up with packages, to attract Westerners, especially visitors from the U.S.,” Kurtulmus said. “We are talking to Greece and others.”

Turkey is also trying to attract visitors from Asia apart from its usual markets in Europe.
“We are trying to open the doors of Far East countries – namely China, India, Japan, Korea, Indonesia and Malaysia,” Kurtulmus said. “They also have new real middle classes, especially China and India.”

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