Introducing more direct flights between Prague and Baku would be helpful in increasing the number of tourists in both directions, Foreign Minister of Czech Republic Tomas Petricek said in an interview with Trend.
"Much like in trade and exchange of students, we feel there is a bit of a lack of balance in the tourist flows between our countries. While we invite all Azerbaijanis to visit our country, and not just the already very popular Prague and Karlovy Vary, we would also like more Czechs to visit Azerbaijan. Unfortunately, I have not yet been to your country but based on observations of my colleagues, the Czech Foreign Ministry has a very positive travel advice at its website to our citizens who want to do so. That is, besides advising not to visit the occupied territories, we encourage our citizens to explore Azerbaijan as it is a beautiful country, and a safe one for those tourists who follow the rules," said the minister.
Petricek noted that the Czech Republic welcomes the process of Azerbaijan's opening to foreign visitors and supports the development of tourism in forms which minimize the negative impact on Azerbaijan's natural and cultural diversity.
"Obviously, introducing more direct flights between Prague and Baku would be helpful in increasing the number of tourists in both directions. The Visa Facilitation Agreement between the EU and Azerbaijan already allows for free visas for various categories of people – including participants of international sports events, a number of which are hosted by Azerbaijan every year. My personal impression is that a more intensive promotion of Azerbaijan as a tourist destination by your state agencies would help to increase the number of visitors from our country, whose ranks I would personally love to join," he added.
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