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04 March 2013 / 06:57

UzA, 27 February 2013, 18:28

On 26 February the Legislative Chamber of the Oliy Majlis of the Republic of Uzbekistan held a parliamentary hearing on the pace of implementation of measures in tourism development in Uzbekistan, reports the information service of the Uzbek Parliament.  Chairman of Uzbekturizm national company F.Rizaev attended the meeting and answered the questions by MPs.

The hearing was called on the iniative of the Milliy tiklanish democratic party fraction to analyse and objectively assess the pace of implementation of legislative acts, state programs, directed at tourism development as one of the most important sectors of the national economy and efficient means of promoting unique national cultural, spiritual heritage and historicla legacy of the Uzbekistan nation.

Today both Uzbek and foreign experts admit Uzbekistan’s rich potential in tourism development. Over 4000 architectural and cultural monuments of various epochs and civilisations, many of which are included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage list, are located in the country.

The analysis of the sphere demonstrates that during the years of independence the necessary legislative, normative base, regulating tourism sphere and ensuring dynamic development of tourist industry, has been created. Systemic works on restoring and renewing cultural heritage sites, increasing the quality of tourist services in the regions are carried out.

Tourism has become an important source of employment, regional development. Currently 865 tourist organisation operate in the country. Comparing to 2011, last year the number of tourists increased by 17,5%, revenue rose 15%. 

However, deputies found several unused opportunities for further development of tourist services based on their controlling and analytical studies. Tourist flows are concentrated in Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva. Insufficient  attention is paid to systemic infrastructure development in several prospective regions. It is necessary to create additional opportunites for developing educational, scientific, environmental, sports and recreational tourism. The quality of services  needs improvement and modern efficient forms and methods of tourist attraction, IT tools in national tourist industry should be introduced faster.

In their comments, the deputies also raised questions on organising and developing internal, including youth, tourism with tourist routes for schoolchildren and students to be filled with more content, and making available the materials on the history and significance of cultural heritage sites.

In this regard, MPs highlighted the need for further improving national legislation in tourism, in particular, the Law on tourism, adopted in 1999, which needs quality amendments, taking into account the changes in international and national tourist industries, in international legal regulations. At present tourist activity is regulated by over 30 legal acts, except the above-mentioned Law and needs systemisation and codification.

According to the deputies, development of single governmental policy in tourism, attraction of external credits and investments into the sphere as well as development and adoption of the long-term state program on tourism development could increase competitiveness of the sphere. The program should focus on carrying out a set of measures on further development of tourist infrastructure, enhancing travel services, improving the system of economic stimulus for enterpreneurs, operating in the sphere, using tourist potential in promoting enlightenment and education of the citizens, encouraging pride for the home country and respect for national history, culture and traditions among the youth.

The meeting also recommended to develop and implement regional programs on tourism development and creating the necessary infrastructure, to adopt additional measures on introducing ICT in tourism, to create national online booking systems.

The deputies also underlined the need to improve national system of training tourist personnel, who have mastered modern management, business administration methods as well as communication skills to convey reliable information about the history and the present of Uzbekistan, socio-economic and political reforms in the country to local and international travelers.

The deputies adopted a resolution of the Legislative Chamber of the Oliy Majlis following the parliamentary hearing.