Minister Angelkova: Bulgaria is in the top 5 of preferred destinations for Russian tourists

31 May 2018

We are preparing the announcement of 2019 as the year of tourism of Russia in Bulgaria and of Bulgaria in Russia

Bulgaria is in the top 5 of the destinations preferred by Russian tourists with a significant growth potential for the number of visitors from the Russian Federation in our country. There were very important steps, which were supported on a top political level by the Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and the President Vladimir Putin in the context of the current geopolitical situation and competition from countries like Turkey and Egypt. This was stated before media in Moscow by the Minister of Tourism, Nikolina Angelkova, following discussions during the visit of the Bulgarian government delegation headed by the Bulgarian prime minister. It was again pointed out during the meetings that our country offers a very high-grade tourism product, especially as regards family and child tourism. We are holding on to the top stop as regards demand in these aspect, according to the evaluation of National Geographic Traveler, she added.

Minister Angelkova also met the Russian Federation’s Minister of Culture, Vladimir Medinskii, whose institute also covers the tourism sector. She also spoke to the head of the Federal Agency for Tourism (FAT) – Oleg Safonov. We have wonderful relations with Mr. Safonov and again confirmed the good mutual cooperation in the development of various type of tourism. Apart from the key seaside vacations, visitors from the Russian Federation also display great interest in the pilgrimage-, cultural-historical, spa and medical spa, festival-, and other specialized services. We should also not leave out the child camps, which have long-standing traditions in our relations, emphasized Minister Angelkova.

She recalled that the recent years, 2016 in particular, were record-breaking in terms of visits of Russian tourists to Bulgaria. Back then there was growth of circa 20 percent, last year we maintained that sustainability. We are hopeful to solidify these results in 2018 and welcome some 550 000 Russian tourists, she said further.

We undertook to arrange joint initiatives in both Bulgaria and Russia of the two ministries and FAT, but the most important thing is we received the exceptional support of both Prime Minister Borisov and President Putin in how important it is to develop tourism, commented Minister Angelkova. They supported our proposal to announce 2019 as the year of tourism of Russia in Bulgaria and of Bulgaria in Russia; based on this we are planning to sign a special agenda until the year’s end. It is the first time that this is happening in the relations between the two country and I am convinced that this will further stimulate the sector. We already have a confirmation of a visit of Oleg Safonov to Bulgaria this fall, during the International Congress of World Civilizations and Ancient Routes that we are now organizing, then we will formally announce the decision made, it was made clear by the Minister.

Nikolina Angelkova further explained that it was pointed out during the meetings between the Prime Minister Borisov and President Putting what an important and safe destination Bulgaria is for Russian tourists. I am very thankful to both for their support because this will play a part in further promoting the flow of tourists. I advised our hosts that we are starting a special communication campaign as of June 1 for the Russian market on all media channels. We received a lot of positive feedback and support for our work with the Federation’s regions. We are focusing actively our bilateral relations with them because there is marked interest in Bulgaria not just from the bigger cities, the Bulgarian minister added.

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