Home Tourism Turkey-China Sign Memorandum of Understanding on Tourism Collaboration

Turkey-China Sign Memorandum of Understanding on Tourism Collaboration

Turkey and the People’s Republic of China have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to enhance tourism cooperation between the two nations. The meeting between Turkish Culture and Tourism Minister Mr. Mehmet Nuri Ersoy and the Minister of Culture and Tourism of the People’s Republic of China, Mr. Sun Yeli, took place at the Ataturk Cultural Center in Taksim Square, Istanbul, Turkey, on 5 June 2024. Mr. Sun Yeli was visiting Turkey with an accompanying delegation.

After their meeting, both ministers signed the MoU outlining collaborative plans on promoting tourism, marketing, investment, program exchanges, and preserving and promoting both nations’ cultural heritage.  Mr. Mehmet Nuri Ersoy and Mr. Sun Yeli pledged to enhance cooperation based on mutual benefit. Commenting on the occasion, Mr. Ersoy wrote on X: “We signed a “Tourism Cooperation Memorandum of Understanding” with my counterpart, whom we are very pleased to host in Turkey, to increase, develop and encourage cooperation in the field of tourism between our countries based on equality and mutual benefit.” He added, “We wish to establish much closer relations between Turkey and the People’s Republic of China, both culturally and in the field of tourism.”

According to Türkiye’s Directorate of Communications, both nations agreed to initiate direct collaboration among specialised organisations and institutions in Turkey and China in the abovementioned areas during the meeting. The statement also noted Turkey’s recent efforts to attract Chinese tourists.

2,48,000 Chinese tourists visited Turkey in 2023. 1,12,000 Chinese tourists visited Turkey in the first four months of 2024. This indicates a 131% increase in several tourists in Turkey in 2023. Chinese holidaymakers accounted for only 1% of the total tourist footfall in Turkey from January-April 2024. Chinese tourists surged to 35,000, almost 100%, in April alone.

Last month, Mr. Ersoy explained that Turkey wished to focus on Asian tourists more as it wants to become one of the top three tourist destinations in the world. He also said that the Ministry is working with Turkish Airlines to target those markets in which they want swift growth.

In 2023, Turkey broke a new record in arrivals by hosting 56.7 million visitors, including the expatriate Turkish population. Istanbul and the Mediterranean city of Antalya are Turkey’s most favoured tourist spots. The Capadoccia region, located in central Nevşehir province, with its hot air balloon rides and caves, was a popular tourist spot for Chinese visitors. However, the Tourism Ministry of Turkey wishes to integrate several provinces in the tourism spectrum by involving various organisations focussing on train rides and archaeology.

The Turkish government aims to generate a revenue of $60 billion this year by increasing the number of tourists to 60 million.