Astana 2017 Signs Agreement at GTEF

Kazakhstan-Minister-Foreign-Affairs-Rapil-Zhoshybayev-Bernard-Metzger-Travel-Tourism-FoundationMacao (Macau SAR) – October 28, 2014 – The third Global Tourism Economy Forum (GTEF) took place in Macau on Oct. 27 and 28. Kazakhstan’s delegation, headed by First Deputy Foreign Minister Rapil Zhoshybayev, reported on the upcoming EXPO 2017 and Kazakhstan’s tourism potential.

In face-to-face discussion panels, global leaders from the private sector into real-time discussion with tourism ministers from European and Asian countries. At the session, Zhoshybayev described trends in world tourism and measures undertaken by the government of Kazakhstan to improve the tourism climate as well as plans to develop infrastructure. Zhoshybayev, who also serves as the National EXPO 2017 Commissioner, stressed that EXPO 2017, which will be held in Astana in June-September 2017, is going to become the locomotive driving tourism in the country.

(Photo caption: Mr. Rapil S. Zhoshybayev, First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan and Mr. Bernard A. Metzger, Chairman, Travel and Tourism and Founder, Travelindex)

A special session devoted to tourism in Kazakhstan, as well as information on EXPO 2017, caught the public’s interest. Visitors had a chance to learn more about the upcoming EXPO 2017 and sights of Kazakhstan.

A memorandum of cooperation between the Astana EXPO 2017 National Company and the Chamber of Tourism of China was signed during the forum. Membership of the state-owned company in the Pacific Asian Travel Association (PATA) was agreed and a memorandum of cooperation was signed.

The forum plays a significant role for a global tourism destination like Macau, with tourism being the pillar of the city’s economy. Chief of Office of the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Cecília Cheung commented that Macau has been closely following the central government’s twelfth five-year plan to establish the city as a world centre of tourism and leisure as well as a regional trade and business service platform.

As Macau undertakes its mission to develop into a world tourism and leisure centre, the city’s need to remain abreast of global affairs increases. We gathered all of the tourism heavyweights and experts who can share their insightful perspectives, said Cheung.

At the forum, Zhoshybayev also met with Vice President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Masoud Soltanifar to discuss Iran’s participation in EXPO 2017 and cooperation in the tourism sector.

Also, Zhoshybayev held talks with the ministers of tourism of Cambodia and Croatia, as well as Director of the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Márcio Favilla and Chairman of PATA Scott Supernaw. Following the meeting, Zhoshybayev invited participants to visit Kazakhstan in hopes of furthering cooperation in the economic, trade and tourism sectors.

The first two editions of GTEF achieved phenomenal success and earned the forum a solid reputation as an effective platform that brings key decision-makers in the global tourism industry to Macau to exchange perspectives with their Chinese counterparts, explore business ideas and generate solutions to far-reaching issues. Last year, the second edition of GTEF attracted over 1,000 representatives from 28 countries and regions as well as delegations from 10 provinces and cities of mainland China.

Recognising the unique values of GTEF and its growing momentum, many international organisations are building closer partnerships with GTEF. During the forum in 2014, the UNWTO and the coordinator of GTEF, Global Tourism Economy Research Centre published their first report of their joint research projects on “Asia Tourism Trends”.

Contact information:
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
D. Kunaev st. 31
Astana 010000
Republic of Kazakhstan
Tel. +7 7172 72 03 33

Consulate General of the Republic of Kazakhstan
3106, 31F, West Tower, Shun Tak Centre
200 Connaught Road Central
Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
Hong Kong SAR
Tel. +852 2548 3841

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