Tourism officials of the Central Asian countries are planning to organize joint tours along the Silk Road. The government agencies of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan are working on this initiative. Tourism industry’s potential and prospects were discussed at a tourism exhibition in Almaty. 500 delegates from forty countries gathered at the “Tourism and Travel” exhibition. The event was attended by five thousand people including specialists from various regions of Kazakhstan, the Central Asian countries and others.

SHAHRUKH MALIKOV, DIRECTOR GENERAL, UZBEKISTAN’S NATIONAL PR CENTER:

 - We have big tours in Uzbekistan that include Uzbek cities and regions with a great potential, such as Surkhandarya, Karakalpakstan, Kashkadarya and Jizakh region. Russian tourists express the greatest interest. We get the largest number of tourists from Russia, followed by Turkish tourists. South Koreans travelers are the third large group. The rest are tourists from Europe.

The exhibition participants from Egypt are also planning to strengthen bilateral cooperation with the Central Asian countries. Flight connections between Almaty-Hurghada and Astana-Hurghada will be launched soon. Egypt is one of the most popular destinations for Kazakh travelers.  It is a comfortable and affordable holiday destination. More than 90% of Egyptian hotels offer free accommodation for children.

KHALED FODA, SOUTH SINAI GOVERNOR:

 - There are 20 flights between Kazakhstan and Egypt per week. Before the revolution, we used to receive 14,000 tourists. After the revolution, the number of tourists from Kazakhstan has significantly decreased. We are working to restore the former status quo. We are actively cooperating in this field with Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Georgia.

Egypt, where the tourist season lasts all year round, is a tempting destination for the Kazakh tourists.  Governments of Kazakhstan and Egypt are planning to jointly restore the valuable historical facility, the mosque of Sultan Beibarys and add promote it as a new tourist destination.

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