People, Travel

Working Group to Follow Iran-Spain Tourism Agreements

Working Group to Follow Iran-Spain Tourism AgreementsWorking Group to Follow Iran-Spain Tourism Agreements

At a meeting, the Spanish ambassador to Tehran, Pedro Villena, and head of Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO), Masoud Soltanifar, supported expanding of ties in the areas of culture and tourism.

A working group has been established to help ensure two-way deals are implemented. The main areas of the agreement, Soltanifar explained, are to safeguard and preserve cultural heritage through effective approaches, support the tourism industry to capitalize this heritage in a constructive and sustainable way, and develop the grounds for broader collaboration, according to CHN.

Pointing to the successful example of Spain in the tourism industry with over 60 million tourists visiting the country annually, he asserted Iran is willing to learn from this the successes and vast experience, to improve its tourism industry.

He added domestic and international issues such as the lack of infrastructure and the sanctions imposed on Iran, have prevented the tourism industry from being able to flourish.

Policies of the government to expand ties with the world have put Iran back at the center of attention for tourists, particularly Europeans, as a preferred destination. Today, the country’s tourism industry is taking big steps toward growth.

He noted that according to the latest statistics, in 2014, demand for traveling to Iran from Spanish tourists jumped by 300%.

Villena said Spanish authorities are willing to increase collaboration with Iran in both culture and tourism.

He said Spain is the second country in the world to have 10% of its GDP from tourism.

The Spanish envoy stressed that Iran is among the main cultural tourism destinations for Spanish travelers and hoped that Spain can help Iran boost its tourism industry.

He voiced readiness to sign an MoU with Iran for collaborating in museum construction and management, as well as dispatching experts in economic tourism to Iran.