14 December 2013 15:04

 Major tour operators mainly from Russia have shown strong interest in starting their tourism programme to Cyprus from March rather than May, Cyprus Hotel Association ( CHA) chairman Haris Loizides said yesterday.
This helps with efforts to lengthen the tourism period, he said after a meeting with Communications Minister Tasos Mitsopoulos.
Mitsopoulos and Loizides discussed key tourism issues such as open skies that the Communications Ministry is responsible for.
Other points of discussion included archaeological sites and transportation between airports and resorts around the island.
Mitsopoulos said open skies was discussed as part of efforts to solve the tourism industry’s chronic problem of seasonality by extending the tourism season which will enable hotels to stay open, keep jobs and generate additional revenue for the state.
Loizides stressed that emphasis was given to the open skies issue, a policy that will further upgrade winter tourism and extend the tourism season.
“I believe our views are on the same track and we hope that with the implementation of various ideas and actions that we discussed with the Minister we will soon have positive results,” Loizides said.
The CHA chief was confident there are “very good prospects” for starting the process of lengthening the tourism season from next March until November 2014.


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