Turkey has huge investment and earning potential in the tourism sector, said the country's president on Saturday, reports Anadolu Agency.
Speaking at the opening of NG Phaselis Bay Hotel in the Kemer district of Turkey's Mediterranean resort city of Antalya, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the country's fight against COVID-19 along with rapid vaccination will accelerate even more in the coming weeks.
"Our country has gradually started to come off the lists of travel restrictions. We welcome the decision taken by Russia, after France, in this direction," he said. "We will be able to ensure that our tourism professionals seize this opportunity at least in the second half of the 2021 season."
Erdogan said the mass inoculation campaign in Turkey is now entering a new period, and that he is hopeful the country will reach higher figures in the tourism sector this year.
"I recommend our investors to prepare for this new period in advance … tourists who take a vacation in Turkey cannot easily give up," he said. "Both Turkey and those who prefer our country win, and hopefully, with this win-win policy, we will constantly increase our position in tourism."
Erdogan said they will continue to work toward the goal of making Turkey an international brand in the tourism sector, as they did in other sectors such as health, defense, construction, and textile.
At the ceremony, Erdogan was accompanied by Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy, Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank as well as First Lady Emine Erdogan.
Separately, he attended Turkey's AK Party's congress in Antalya.
"We closed last year with 16 million tourists, hopefully, we will reach even more this year. Of course, our main goal is to recapture the number of 52 million tourists in 2019 as soon as possible and then reach 70 million," he said.
Mentioning that people from all over the world look at Antalya with admiration, he said the city will realize its full potential.
Erdogan went to the resort city on Friday to attend the Antalya Diplomacy Forum, a high-level gathering of political leaders, diplomats, opinion makers, and academics.