Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy spoke at the 13th International Resort Tourism Congress organized by AKTOB. Here are the highlights from Minister Ersoy's speech:

We've exceeded 50 million visitors in 10 months

We are approaching the end of another fulfilling year in tourism. As you know, we had set a target of $55.6 billion in tourism revenue for the year 2023 within the framework of the Medium-Term Program. Despite the challenges posed by the earthquake disaster in February, followed by the election process, and now the international repercussions of Israel's attacks on Gaza, we are very close to our targets.

The total number of visitors we hosted from January to October 2023 has exceeded 50.2 million. The number of foreign tourists choosing Türkiye for their vacations has shown an increase of 11.58% compared to the same period last year.

Tourism revenue increased by 20%

In terms of tourism revenue, we have reached $42 billion in the January-September period of 2023. Comparing this to the $35 billion revenue achieved in the same period last year, we are pleased to see a 20% increase.

Per capita tourism revenue will reach $100 this year

We have also achieved success in per capita overnight spending figures. It is important to note that for us, per capita overnight spending is more crucial than per capita spending in general. Türkiye closed the year 2017 with $65. Thanks to successful policies implemented, we had increased this figure to $89 by the end of 2022. This year, our goal is to complete it at $100.

Bed capacity increased to 2.2 million

Furthermore, we have increased the total bed capacity of accommodation facilities from approximately 800,000 in 2002 to 2.2 million as of November, a 175% increase. Making it mandatory for all facilities to have Ministry certification, we are approaching the completion of a crucial process for quality tourism.

The figures indicate that we are in the world's premier league

All these figures indicate that we, as Türkiye, are now in the premier league of tourism. We view countries that excel in this field as our competitors and progress towards our goals accordingly. Our aim for 2028 is even more significant. We will raise the bar to $100 billion in tourism revenue.

Hopefully, as always, with the dedicated efforts and support of our esteemed industry stakeholders, we will achieve our goals one by one.

Editor: Mehmet Güneli