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FACTDROP: Cyprus hopes for 400,000 Russian tourists in 2012


Cyprus hopes for 400,000 Russian tourists in 2012

Πηγή: Cyprus Mail
By Poly Pantelides
Feb 11 2012

SEVEN new airports from the Russian Federation will be offering flights to Cyprus this year, the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) said yesterday.

“We hope to have over 400,000 tourists from Russia in 2012,” CTO head Alecos Orountiotis said at a news conference.

Last year over 330,000 Russian tourists visited Cyprus, over 100,000 more than the year before when about 224,000 came and about 230,000 more from 2005 when 97,000 Russian people visited.

Seven new airports in the Russian Federation will now be offering flights from Perm, Arkhangelsk, Kemerovo, Tyumen, Chelyabinsk, Omsk and Nizhny Novgorod.

There are already flights from nine other airports in the Russian Federation: Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Ufa, Rostov, Novosibirsk, Kazan, Krasnoyarsk and Samara.

The 16 cities are located on both European Russia and Asian Russia’s West Siberian plain.

Some cities are among the most populous in the Russian Federation and many are administrative centres in their region.

“The Russian market is a major priority for us,” Orountiotis said.

A CTO representation went over to Moscow and Saint Petersburg earlier this month and held meetings with major tourist agents, Orountiotis said adding that indications were “encouraging”.

Russian investments in Cyprus in 2010 were worth €2.7 billion, 12 per cent of the island’s GDP, according to economists at the fourth Cyprus Economist Summit last March.

Economists said at the summit that tourism brought in €221 million annually and was expected to rise.

The government has secured a €2.5 billion loan from Russia to cover its financing requirements for this year receiving two instalments in December and January with the final €590 million tranche expected in March.

The Russian market brings in the second largest number of tourists after the UK and has “grown by leaps and bounds” over the past few years, Orountiotis said.

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