CALANGUTE: Business delegations from commonwealth of independent states (CIS) countries including Kirgizstan and Mongolia, besides Russia, will be participating in the Goa International Travel Mart (GITM) beginning on April 2 at Taleigao. Russian Information Center (RIC), in Goa, will set up a stall promoting Russia as an emerging tourist destination for India at the GITM.
"This is a promising event to promote Russia, its tourism opportunities and rich culture, as this event brings together travel companies, hoteliers, tourism authorities and many other industry players. Our task is to introduce Russia as a great historical and cultural hub, as a new emerging tourism destination for guests from India and also as a place for developing tourism-related business projects," said Ekaterina Belyakova, head of RIC.
A special seminar on Russia as a new destination for India outbound tourism will be held by RIC during GITM. Experts will introduce tour package options to Moscow and St-Petersburg. Speakers will also shed some light on the plans of RIC and Goa Tourism to organize Indo-Russian cultural festivals both in Russia and in India, aimed at promoting closer relations between the two countries.
"RIC will bring business delegations from CIS countries, like Mongolia, Kirgizstan and several other countries to GITM," Belyakova said. As many of these countries were recently included in the list of countries eligible for simplified visa regime introduced by the Indian government, Goa is likely to become a major destination in South Asia for these countries, many of which are currently not having any charter flights to Goa, unlike Thailand and Bali.
RIC has also invited Russian musicians and performers to the GITM and plans to serve guests traditional vodka with special Russian snacks.
RIC is launching Russian language courses in Goa designed to help Indians working in the tourism industry learn industry-specific language skills within a short span of time. An open Russian language lesson will be conducted by RIC teachers for all GITM participants.
"We are planning on not only teaching Russian here in Goa but to take students to Russia to meet Russian students in Moscow and St Petersburg. We hope even a short trip to Russia will enrich Indian students with knowledge of Russia," Belyakova added.