Greece is now able to assume more international initiatives for “Silk Road” tourism, Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura said on Thursday, at the conclusion in Thessaloniki of the 8th UNWTO International Meeting on Silk Road Tourism.
The meeting was a partnership of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the Ministry of Tourism and the Region of Central Macedonia have partnered together to organize the 8th UNWTO International Meeting on Silk Road Tourism in Thessaloniki, Greece on 10-12 October 2018. (The sessions ended on October 11; the schedule for October 12 consists of a tour to Aigai and the museum of the Royal Tomb.)
Speakers included UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili, UNWTO Executive Director Shanzhong Zhu, and Deputy Regional Governor for Central Macedonia Voula Patoulidou, along with travel organization representatives such as TripAdvisor, professors, and other specialists.
Kountoura held meetings with Pololikashvili, Zhu Shanzhong and the national delegations of Bulgaria, Turkey and Uzbekistan. Her meetings included Uzbekistan’s Deputy Prime Minister Aziz Abdukhaminov, Bulgaria’s Deputy Minister of Tourism Lyuben Kanchev, and Turkey’s Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism Omer Arisoy, who suggested the institution of tourism working group meetings between the two countries.
This is the first international Silk Road meeting held outside of China, and it focused on the role and relevance of the Silk Road within a globalized tourism framework. It is the first time it was held outside of China and the first hosted by a European Silk Road members-state. Previous meetings were held in Dunhuang (2013) and Xi’an (2015).