Tourist inflow to Tajikistan reportedly falls nearly 45 percent

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The Agency notes that in accordance with the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) methodology, 306,000 of those foreign nationals are estimated as tourists. Compared to the same period last year, the number of foreign tourists has reportedly fallen 44.2 percent.

 

According to the Agency, 362,000 citizens of the CIS nations, including 234,000 citizens of Uzbekistan, 44,000 citizens of Russia, 39,000 citizens of Kyrgyzstan and 6,000 citizens of Kazakhstan, as well as 16,000 citizens of far abroad countries, including 4,400 citizens of Afghanistan, 1,800 citizens of Turkey, 1,500 citizens of China, 800 citizens of the United States and 800 citizens of Iran, have visited Tajikistan over the same six-month period.

 

The Agency for Statistics says 215 tour operators have been registered in Tajikistan to date. The majority of foreign citizens are reportedly visiting Tajikistan bypassing the tourist companies.

 

188 hotels, 26 hostels and motels, 46 sanatoriums, 8 resort centers, 10 rest homes, 1 boarding house, 1 camping and 4 tourist bases now operate in the country.

 

Recall, Tajikistan began closing its common borders with other countries in late January due to the coronavirus crisis.

 

Meanwhile, the findings of a World Bank supported survey of tour operators aimed at understanding their view on Tajikistan’s tourism development, which was presented in Tajikistan in October last year, notes that Tajikistan is becoming increasingly popular for tourists from Europe, North America, China and Australia, but it can certainly do more to respond to the demand, which is steadily increasing. The survey shows, that the demand is increasing largely due to growing knowledge and information about Tajikistan and the Central Asia region in general.

 

Almost 50% of local tour operators and almost 90% of international operators are reportedly of opinion that Tajikistan has not yet reached its full tourism potential. However, Tajikistan can do more to attract more tourists and to extract more benefits from those who are currently visiting Tajikistan. On average a visitor spends between US$800 and US$1200 for a 6-12 day stay, which is significantly below the global average: according to UNWTO adventure tourists spend an average of US$3000 on an 8 day-trip. Significantly, Tajikistan is known as a safe destination to visit despite its proximity to Afghanistan, according to the surveyed tour operators.

 

The survey identifies a number of areas, which can be looked at to attract more tourists and to increase tourism spending. Improvements in air connectivity into and within Tajikistan, preservation and upgrading of tourism sites, simplification of the regulatory environment, improvement of the facilities for homestays (electricity, water and sewage), upgrade of skills in tourism sector were among the areas pointed out by tour operators, which could help Tajikistan reach its full tourism potential.

 

The survey covered the nationwide Tajikistan experience, but gave particular focus to the two regions targeted by the Rural Economy Development Project: Khatlon province and the Gorno Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO).

 

Source: Asia Plus