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Grodno Oblast has reported an increase in export of tourism services to the Baltic states, Deputy Head of the Sport and Tourism Department of the Grodno Oblast Executive Committee Tatyana Lidyayeva told BelTA.
Grodno Oblast focuses on expanding the range of exported tourism services. Russia is still the most valuable visitor market of the region, but the share of tourists from other countries, for example, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia, is growing. “People are drawn to Grodno Oblast thanks to the visa waiver program. For example, the growth rate of tourism services export to Lithuania came at 137% in 2019 (around $737,000), tourism services export to Latvia went up by 1.5 times over 2018 and totaled $238,000. This is still not the limit,” Tatyana Lidyayeva said. She stressed that medical tourism and recuperation services are gaining popularity. The region is getting more opportunities to develop this area. Since November 2019, the whole territory of Grodno Oblast has been made available for visa-free group tourism along planned tourist routes. The visa-free travel time for foreign citizens has been extended up to 15 days.
“It is important to promote tourism potential of the region in foreign markets. For example, Grodno Oblast will showcase its health resorts, travel agencies, and hotels at the international travel trade fair Balttour 2020 due in Riga from 31 January to 2 February,” Tatyana Lidyayeva noted. Moreover, a presentation of the tourism potential of the region will be held in the Belarusian embassy in Latvia.
Grodno Oblast also actively promotes its tourism services in other countries. For example, travel agencies of the region are set to take part in a workshop in Poland in February. They will make potential clients and partners familiar with tourism opportunities of Grodno Oblast.