Tehran conference to explore cultural impact of coronavirus on tourism

February 16, 2021 - 19:53

TEHRAN – The social and cultural impact of the novel coronavirus on the arenas of tourism and cultural heritage will be explored at a Tehran conference.

The event is set to be held at the Research Institute of Cultural Heritage & Tourism (RICHT) on February 17 and 18, according to organizers.

Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Minister Ali-Asghar Mounesan, and Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Seyyed Abbas Salehi are scheduled to deliver opening speeches.  

A host of cultural experts, sociologists, academia, Iranologists, archaeologists, have been tourism insiders invited to the event.

The average of international travels to and from Iran fell by 84 percent during the first nine months of the current Iranian calendar year (started March 20, 2020) from a year earlier.

Passenger traffic from land and air borders during the first nine months of this year compared to the same period last year, decreased by 84.57% in incoming passenger traffic and 84.33% decrease in outgoing passenger traffic, according to the Customs Administration.

Furthermore, international tourist arrivals to Iran plunged 72% during the first eight months of the year when compared to 2019, according to data compiled by the World Tourism Organization.

Optimistic forecasts, expect the country would achieve a tourism boom after coronavirus contained, believing its impact would be temporary and short-lived for a country that ranked the third fastest-growing tourism destination in 2019.

According to a UNWTO Barometer, international arrivals plunged 81% last July and 79% in last August, traditionally the two busiest months of 2020 and the peak of the Northern Hemisphere summer season. The drop until August 2020 represents 700 million fewer arrivals compared to the same period in 2019 and translates into a loss of $730 billion in export revenues from international tourism.

UNWTO’s Panel of Experts foresees a rebound in international tourism in 2021, mostly in the third quarter of 2021. However, around 20% of experts suggest the rebound could occur only in 2022.


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