Hotel Groups Willing to Invest

Hotel Groups Willing to InvestHotel Groups Willing to Invest

The Vice President and Head of Cultural Heritage Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO) Masud Soltanifar informed news agencies - on the sidelines of a meeting with hotel managers association last week- that big names in the hotel construction industry such as UAE-based Rotana hotel management firm are “awaiting the results of Iran’s nuclear negations before finalizing their investment projects,” Mehr News reported.

“Iran has a lot to offer commercially and culturally; trade has been phenomenal there,” said Omer Kaddouri, Rotana’s executive vice president was quoted as saying .

 “We are hoping the recent developments will bring prosperity to the region,” the vice president said. “If we open three or four hotels in Iran, and the Iranian developers and businessmen can see what we can do, then … there’s loads of opportunities,” he added.

According to Soltanifar, foreign companies are eager to invest in Iran’s tourism sector. But are all waiting for the final outcome of Iran’s negotiations with P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany). The head of ICHHTO said he met several foreign businesses in the past 6 months who were all “very eager to invest in Iran’s tourism.”

The six powers and Iran decided on Monday to continue negotiations on the nuclear case for another seven months and put together the so-called comprehensive agreement by summer.

“Most investors are interested in building hotels,” said Soltanifar who emphasized the need for construction of more hotels in Iran. But he says the sanctions are the main hurdle in the way of foreign investments.

Earlier this year, Soltanifar had said two hotel groups from France and Turkey were willing to invest in Iran. The French builders had announced plans for the construction of 20 4-star hotels in 20 regions across the country. The Rotana firm which owns the Rotana hotel chain in the UAE is another company awaiting the results of Iran’s nuclear talks before starting its investment projects.

On a similar note, the head of history and tourism development parliamentary group, Javad Heravi referred to “economic growth” as one of the main drivers for reaching agreements in the nuclear negotiations which could “help Iran’s tourism to come out of its current isolated state”. He said many foreigners are eager to travel to Iran to see its historical and natural attractions, but are unable to do so because of the problems associated with the sanctions.