TASHKENT (TCA) — The huge potential of Uzbekistan in the sphere of tourism has not been used effectively and fully for many years. This was said at a Government meeting on tourism held on February 22 under the chairmanship of the President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, the Jahon information agency reported.
President Mirziyoyev, highlighting the role of tourism in the Uzbek economy, analyzed the current state of the tourist industry and measures taken for its development.
According to the president’s decree “On measures for ensuring accelerated development of the tourism industry of the Republic of Uzbekistan” of December 2, 2016, tourism is defined as a strategic branch of the economy of Uzbekistan. A Program of priority measures on development of tourism for 2018-2019 was approved by the Resolution of the President of August 16, 2017.
At the meeting, it was noted that almost 2.7 million tourists visited Uzbekistan in 2017. Most of them are people who come to see relatives, to study, for medical, commercial and other purposes.
The State Committee for Tourism Development was tasked to ensure, together with relevant ministries and agencies, an increase in the number of tourists in all promising areas of tourism and the volume of real export of tourism services by at least two times in the next 5 years.
The meeting also discussed issues of extending the tourism season, expanding the types of provided services and improving the tourism infrastructure.
It was said that most hotels are located in Tashkent, Bukhara and Samarkand, but despite this, in the tourism season, there is a shortage of beds even there.
Instructions were given to increase the number of hotels, create private accommodation facilities and guest houses, and allocate land plots to entrepreneurs for these purposes. The need was noted for increasing the number of sanitary-hygienic stations at places of tourist visits and along highways.
At the meeting, special attention was paid to the need of producing souvenirs and their sale in special kiosks, opening “Duty Free” and “Tax Free” stores in the airports of tourist cities, organization of car rental centers and Wi-Fi zones with involvement of business entities.