"Currently, Iran's tourism industry is sick, but craftsmen and activists in this field are prudent that the new government can revitalize Iran's tourism industry with the help of these experts."
According to Sina Press, Dr. Mohammad Hossein Imani Khoshkhoo, director of the National Park of Soft Sciences and Technologies and Cultural Industries, said in a press conference at the first symposium of one hundred years of tourism in Iran: "Today, the tourism industry is very important, especially in social and cultural categories."
He added: "The tourism in the world and in Iran dates back to more than a hundred years and historical documents have shown that travelling with a specific purpose has a very long history." In this symposium, with the presence of a group of experts and faculty members of universities, we intend to have a scientific (not just theoretical) look at the ups and downs of this industry during the last one hundred years.
He stated: "We have always had original cultural, natural and historical tourism resources in Iran. Resources that have been used for different purposes. In different groups of this symposium, we will analyse, critique, and review the great capacities of this industry. We hope that the symmetry of holding this symposium with the beginning of the new government will be a basis for a deeper understanding of this field in order to develop this industry in accordance with the cultural and social categories. Certainly, the development of cultural and social aspects in the field of tourism will lead to economic prosperity in this field."
He reminded: "One of our important goals from the first days of the symposium is to review and critique the path of the tourism industry during the last century, planning and implementation for the future so that the new government can take full advantage of the achievements of this symposium."
According to him, currently, 30 government agencies, institutions, bodies, and international organizations are supporting the symposium. Certainly, a great change will take place in the Iranian tourism industry with the support of these bodies.
Imani in response to the question of whether the topic of medical tourism will also be reviewed in this symposium? said: "Certainly, medical tourism is one of the important capacities in this field. Despite having a great capacity for medical tourism in different parts of Iran, but unfortunately, we have not been able to use it effectively and we are behind other countries, so one of the main topics of this symposium is the review of medical tourism in Iran."
The head of the National Park of Soft Sciences and Technologies and Cultural Industries also said about the outbreak of the Coronavirus and its role in the recession of the tourism industry: "Meanwhile, different countries have devised measures to solve this problem. It was expected that clear measures would be considered in Iran in this regard, but unfortunately, we have acted poorly in this area."
He addressed other challenges of Iran's tourism industry and said: "Unfortunately, during the last forty years, no expert force has been in charge of Iran's tourism in order to solve the problems in this field with a specialized view. We hope to see a specialized force in this field for the first time with the beginning of the new government. A minister who has complete and sufficient nobility in this field. A minister who is not only a listener and a singer, but also involved in the heart of the work."
Imani emphasized: "The first short-term and striking plan of the Minister of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts should be to preserve the remnants of this industry with financial support and necessary instructions. He must also be able to properly restore the capacity of the field over the next few years by implementing long-term and medium-term plans. The worrying thing is that the current problems of society cause the tourism industry to go to the bottom of the priority list."
It is worth mentioning that the first symposium of one hundred years of Iran's tourism will be held from July 17 for three days with the formation of 13 specialized working groups by the Coordination Council of Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism NGOs, Cultural Science and Technology Park, ICOM National Committee, Iranian e-tourism community and with the support and cooperation of Tehran University, University of Isfahan, Cultural Heritage and Tourism Research Institute, Ministry of Roads and Urban Development, Professor Jafari Tourism Foundation, Tourism Commission of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Tehran Municipality Tourism Headquarters and specialized tourism and trade unions.
Reported by: Farzaneh Sedghi
Translated by: Mehdi Fallahi Panah