Tourism, country’s economy best alternative to oil, MP says

January 28, 2023 - 22:0

TEHRAN – The tourism industry in Iran is the most viable alternative to the oil industry in terms of economic growth, a member of the Iranian parliament has said.

In order to save the country’s economy from dependence on oil, tourism is the best alternative, CHTN quoted Gholamreza Montazeri as saying on Saturday.

There are a number of aspects of tourism in Iran that need serious attention for growth and prosperity, he added.

Long shunned by Western travelers, the Islamic Republic has steadily stepped-up efforts to use tourism, over the past couple of years, to help promote its international image battered by endless opposition mostly from the U.S.

Experts believe even before the pandemic, Iran’s tourism was already grappling with some challenges, on top of those Western “media propaganda” aimed at scaring potential travelers away from the Islamic Republic. They say Iran is still somehow “unknown” to many potential travelers due to such a “media war.”

Before the COVID pandemic, Iran's tourism had constantly been growing, reaching more than eight million visitors in the Iranian calendar year 1398 (started March 21, 2019). That surge, however, helped prejudices to become thick and thin.

However, Iran’s trump card is that the country benefits from a wide variety of travel destinations ranging from seacoasts and lush green woods to towering mountains and harsh deserts. As a wallet-friendly destination with hospitable people, Iran has long been a desired destination for nature lovers, birdwatchers, powder chasers, culture devotees, pilgrims, museum-goers, foodies, adventurers, and medical travelers, to name a few.


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