A new five-year tourism strategy is set to start later this year, a minister revealed yesterday.
Industry, Commerce and Tourism Minister Zayed Alzayani, who is also Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) chairman, told MPs that Bahrain will offer attractive tourism packages in a bid to woo all categories of visitors.
He revealed that the strategy was set to be launched in 2020 but the global pandemic and subsequent travel restrictions put paid to the plans.
“We just had the new BTEA board formed and fresh plans on the table,” said Mr Alzayani, “but it would have been a waste of money if we had started them last year.
“Bahrain is an attractive destination and we will pick up once the damaged tourism sector recovers from the aftermath of Covid-19.
“Our five-star hotels are cheaper than most four-star hotels in the region and many other tourist capitals around the world. Our hotels provide superb services with international observers recognising their excellence.”
He added that a proposal had been tabled by Diyar Al Muharraq to operate a special port for cruise ships which has been approved.
“Currently cruises dock at Khalifa Bin Salman Port in Hidd and that’s not ideal when people have to move between trucks and cargo arrivals,” said Mr Alzayani.
“The plan is to become a port of call and choice in the Gulf rather than just taking a share with others. Over time with this will mean more stays in hotels and visits to our inland attractions.
“The port of call will need facilities, markets and attractions and we want MPs to help us with that.”
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