Tourism Minister Angelkova Attends 8th UNWTO Silk Road Ministers' Meeting

Tourism Minister Angelkova Attends 8th UNWTO Silk Road Ministers' Meeting

Berlin/Sofia, March 8 (BTA) - Tourism Minister Nikolina Angelkova participated in the 8th meeting of tourism ministers under the Silk Road Programme of the World Tourism Organization (WTO) which took place on the sidelines of the ITB Berlin Travel Trade Show.

Quoted by her ministry on Wednesday, Angelkova recalled that Bulgaria is presiding over the EU Council in the first six months of the year. During an informal meeting of EU tourism ministers in Sofia a panel was dedicated to 2018 EU-China Tourism Year, to discuss prospective relations.

With regards to the Chinese tourist market Bulgaria registered a growth of 41 per cent in 2017 and is actively working to promote Bulgaria on the Chinese market. In September 2017 Bulgaria opened its first tourist information centre in Shanghai, the minister added.

Angelkova further said that Bulgaria will host the 7th meeting of state and government leaders from Central and Eastern Europe and China in the second half of 2018. A high-level tourist forum is expected to take place on the sidelines within the framework of the 2018 EU China Tourism Year. Angelkova said that Bulgaria is actively cooperating with Greece to create joint tourist products and transnational routes targeted at potential tourists from distant markets. Similar cooperation is planned with Turkey, Serbia, Croatia, Romania and Montenegro.

Angelkova said that in 2017 the Bulgarian Tourism Ministry was involved with the WTO's Western Silk Road initiative.

Speaking at the Berlin Economic Forum organized by the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy, Angelkova said the challenges facing Europe and the world could turn into great opportunities.

In the last five years, Bulgaria's 6 per cent annual average increase in tourist arrivals is larger than the EU's and the global average. In 2017, Bulgaria attracted nearly 8.9 million foreign tourists, more than its population of slightly over 7.1 million. The revenues from international tourism totalled nearly 6.9 billion leva, up more than 9 per cent on 2016.

Source: Berlin/Sofia