Kazakhstan Intends to Make Tourism Key Driver of Economic Growth

ASTANA – Kazakhstan has adopted the Tourism Development Concept for 2023-2029 to make tourism a priority for the country’s economic development, Kazakh Minister of Culture and Sports Askhat Oralov wrote on Facebook on July 10.

Kazakh traditional yurts on mountain meadows in the green Tien Shan Mountains. Photo credit: Almazoff/Shutterstock.

Oralov outlined the main directions and prospects for the country’s tourism advancement, promotion of tourist destinations, development of infrastructure and improvement of services.

The measures aim to increase the number of domestic tourists to 11 million people and inbound tourists to 4 million people by 2030.

“Notably, the ministry intends to employ up to 800,000 people in the tourism sector and increase the share of gross value added in the industry up to 6 trillion tenge ($13.6 billion). It is planned to increase the growth of investments in accommodation and food services up to 260 billion tenge ($589.3 million),” Oralov said.

He added that the eQonaq information system will facilitate migration control and inform the territorial divisions of the Ministry of Emergency Situations about the movement of tourists to ensure timely search and rescue missions and the provision of medical assistance or evacuation, if required.

“Kazakhstan plans to introduce a national rating assessment of regions to evaluate the effectiveness of invested funds and development of tourist infrastructure. The rating will cover key areas and top 50 destinations in the country,” he emphasized. 

The ministry will also adopt a standard for marking tourist trails throughout Kazakhstan according to their complexity and adapted to the hiking experience of the tourists. The installation of signs, information boards and stands will help tourists with navigation and to avoid dangerous hikes.

The country plans to promote handicrafts and create networks of campsites, trailer parks and ethnic villages along the most popular car routes.

To stimulate domestic tourism, Kazakhstan will introduce tourist cashback along with the current Kids Go Free program that offers free tickets for children aged 2 to 17 as part of a domestic tour package.

Oralov said the country will also make efforts to facilitate other types of tourism, including cultural, educational, agritourism, social, medical, environmental, business, and youth.

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