By Leman Mammadova
Azerbaijan Tourism Board consistently expands its activities to promote the tourism potential of Azerbaijan in order to increase the country's influence in the global tourism market.
The Azerbaijani delegation has visited South Korea to discuss opportunities for bilateral cooperation in the field of tourism.
The delegation led by Florian Sengstschmid, Executive Director of Azerbaijan Tourism Board, met in Seoul with representatives of South Korea's leading media agencies (“Travel Insight & TTL News”, “Korea Travel Times”, “Global Travel News”, “Korea Travel News”, “Tour Korea”, “Travel Press”) specializing in travel tourism.
During the meeting, the Azerbaijani side gave detailed information on the tourism potential of the country, presented new tourism brand and promotion video to media representatives, and answered questions about Azerbaijan.
As part of the visit, Florian Sengstschmid also held a meeting at South Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. The sides discussed the development of mutual tourism relations between the two countries as well as the exchange of experience.
Ambassador of Azerbaijan to South Korea Ramzi Teymurov also attended the meetings with heads of influential companies in the Korean market, including "Korean Air", "HanaTour", "Mode Tour", "Yellow Ballon", "JTBC".
During the delegation’s visit, a meeting was also held with the President of “Korea World Travel Fair”. At the same time, the delegation visited “HanaTour Annual Travel Fair” exhibition at SITIF 2019 - Seoul International Tourism Industry Fair.
It should be noted that Azerbaijan Tourism Board plans to open permanent tourism representation in South Korea as well as in the UK, France, Iran.
Representations aim to achieve greater recognition of the country abroad, to increase the flow of tourists from target markets, and to promote the development of tourism in the country as a whole.
The representations will operate in areas such as promotion of tourism potential of Azerbaijan and the region in which they operate, marketing research, preparation of reports, publication of propaganda materials and conducting trainings.
Organization of official tourism representations will also serve to organize seminars on Azerbaijan, as well as meetings for cooperation of tourism and travel companies in regions and Azerbaijan, support Azerbaijan's participation in international exhibitions and coordinate activities to stimulate bilateral relations.
Since the end of last year, Azerbaijani tourism representations have already been operating in six cities - Frankfurt (Germany), Dubai (the United Arab Emirates), Riyadh (Saudi Arabia), Beijing (China), Mumbai (India) and Moscow (Russia).
In the modern world, tourism is one of the most dynamically developing and profitable sectors of the economy for each country. Therefore, Azerbaijan aims to develop this sphere by all possible means. Sustainable development of the non-oil sector, in particular the tourism sector, is crucial at a time when it is impossible to fully rely on oil and gas industry.
Diplomatic relations between Azerbaijan and South Korea were established in 1992. The relations became more intensive after the establishment of the Embassy of South Korea in Azerbaijan in 2006 and the Embassy of Azerbaijan in Korea in 2007.
So far, South Korea has invested about $180 million in the Azerbaijani economy, and Azerbaijan has invested $474 million in South Korea. At present, 74 South Korean companies are registered in Azerbaijan that participate as contractors in government projects.
Recently, Azerbaijan and South Korea have signed a framework agreement on grant support that envisages the continuation of joint cooperation on technical assistance and grant support between the two countries.
Leman Mammadova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @leman_888
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz