Iranian Minister of Tourism, Cultural Heritage, and Handicrafts Ali-Asghar Mounesan said the COVID-19 outbreak has kept the two sides from moving forward with bilateral cooperation programs.
“We had drawn up a special plan for Russia, but unfortunately we were hit by the coronavirus outbreak,” said the minister in a meeting with Russian Ambassador to Tehran Levan Dzhagaryan.
Mounesan said Iran wanted to hold a meeting like the one it held with authorities of China’s private and tourism sectors in order to establish links between tourism agencies of Iran and Russia.
“Iranian tourists like Russia and are interested in traveling to this country. Therefore, a large number of Iranian tourists travelling to Europe can go to Russia as well. We would like to see the number of Iranian tourists to Russia rise,” said the minister.
He said trips to Iran and Russia by tourists of both countries can bring the two nations closer together and make them get more familiar with each other.
“The coronavirus outbreak restricted our programs.
We intended to … travel to Russia with a 40-strong delegation and hold a handicrafts exhibit there and run Iranian performances for several nights, so that Russian travel agencies would get more familiar with Iran’s tourist potential, and so would Iranian agencies,” he said.
The Russian ambassador, in turn, said he agreed with Mounesan’s viewpoints on the promotion of mutual tourism cooperation.