This was announced today in the Government press center by Minister of Culture and Sport Arystanbek Mukhamediuly during a press conference on the development of tourism within the framework of the 8th direction of the Address “Effective Public Administration”.

According to the Minister, an ambitious task is set before the tourism industry - to increase its share in GDP from 1% in 2016 to 8% by 2025. Work was launched in 2017 to achieve this goal.

“2017 was a turning point in the history of Kazakhstan's development. Thanks to the personal participation of the Head of State and the successful holding of EXPO-2017, the world discovered Kazakhstan as a new tourism destination located at the crossroads of Western and Eastern cultures. For the first time since gaining independence, Kazakhstan has clear outlines on the global tourism map,” – Arystanbek Mukhamediuly said.

First of all, an updated Concept for the development of the tourism industry until 2023 was adopted, in which the cluster principle was identified as key to the successful transformation of tourism into an active sector of the country's economy. For the first time in the history of tourism development, memorandums of cooperation were signed between the regions and the Ministry of Culture and Sport.

Second, for the first time in the history of the development of Kazakhstan's tourism, the best experience of developed countries was used to open an office for tourism management at the state level – the “Destination management office”, represented by the national company Kazakh Tourism.

Third, foundation was laid for the development of tourism during the so-called “post-Expo” period. The program documents for the development of the infrastructure of Astana and the Shchuchinsk-Borovoe resort zone were adopted.

Fourth, serious progress was made with regards to visa and migration regimes. A unique visa-free regime introduced and extended until the end of 2018 – the 72 hours of transit for citizens of China, flying through the cities of Almaty and Astana. In the near future we plan to introduce a similar regime for India.

Fifth, the Government has included tourism in the so-called “Olympic track” as the sixth driver of the diversification of the national economy.

Sixth, the process of legislative changes has been initiated with the aim of economic transformation of tourism into a full-fledged competitive industry of Kazakhstan, capable of attracting both national and foreign tourists.

Seventh, work is under way to develop domestic tourism within the framework of the Rukhani Zhanghyru program. Thus, during the first nine months of 2017, the number of domestic tourists increased 25% to 3.5 million people.

For the successful development of the tourism industry, this year it is planned to introduce OECD international standards in the management of tourism.

“We also plan to introduce electronic visas to increase the flow of inbound tourists; continue to stimulate the development of domestic tourism through the implementation of the Rukhani Zhanghyru program; improve the quality of tourism services in all locations through introducing international standards in the development of the industry; launch a large-scale information campaign to attract domestic and foreign tourists. In addition, it is very important for us to create the best tourism climate in the world,” – Minister Arystanbek Mukhamediuly summed up.

www.primeminister.kz

Published: 25 January 2018

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