Under the auspices of Ministry of Industry and Technology and coordination of Bursa Governorship, the The Gala Dinner of the Republic of Turkey – Republic of Korea Tourism Promotion Event organized by BEBKA with the cooperation of Bursa Metropolitan Municipality, South Marmara Region Representation Board and Bursa Culture Tourism and Promotion Union was held.
The gala dinner of the Event was held in Bursa in order to promote the tourism potential of Bursa, Eskişehir and Bilecik provinces and to contribute to the enhancement of cooperation opportunities between our country and the Republic of Korea.
The Gala Dinner was held with a wide participation of guests including Governor of Bursa Province Mr. Yakup Canbolat, Governor of Yalova Province Mr. Muammer Erol, Ambassador of Republic of Korea in Ankara H.E. Choi Hong-Ghi, Ambassador of Republic of Turkey in Seoul H.E. Ersin Erçin, Mayor of Bursa Metropolitan Municipality Mr. Alinur Aktaş, District Mayors of Osmangazi Mr. Mustafa Dündar, Yenişehir Mr. Davut Aydın, Parliament Members of Justice and Development Party (Ak Parti) Mrs. Emine Yavuz Gözgeç, Mrs. Vildan Yılmaz Gürel, Mr. Mustafa Esgin, Mr. Atilla Ödünç, Mr. Zafer Işık, Mrs. Vildan Yılmaz Gürel, Uludağ University Rector Prof. Dr. Ahmet Saim Kılavuz, Bursa Technical University Rector Prof. Dr. Arif Karademir, Anadolu University Rector Prof. Dr. Şafak Ertan Çomaklı, Secretary General of BEBKA, Chairman of the South Marmara Region Representation Board of Turkish Travel Agencies Association Mr. Murat Saraçoğlu and a large number of academicians, businessmen and executives of Korean companies in Turkey.
“Increase in Korean Tourists but not enough”
Speaking in the program, İsmail Gerim , Secretary General of BEBKA, said that historical friendship between Turkey and South Korea is not adequately reflected in the tourism sector.
Mr. Gerim added that “ “the number of tourists coming from South Korea to our country is not enough. From a different perspective; we see that the current situation has a great potential for the development of the tourism relations of the two countries and there is much we can do in this field. According to the figures of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the number of tourists from South Korea to our country has been increasing, but that is not enough. We hope that this upward trend will continue to involve the provinces of the region, reach up to high numbers mutually in accordance with the brotherhood of our countries, the current positive perception to be reflected further into tourism and trade relations, come together and strengthen our countries with this increasing cooperation.”
Relations with South Korea become more frequent for regional tourism
Mr. Gerim stated “in line with these goals, we visited Seoul last month with a delegation of regional representatives to promote historical, cultural and natural tourism values of our region. We will host a group of 10 active Korean bloggers and influencers in Bursa, Eskisehir and Bilecik by the end of August. After this event that we aim to provide active promotion of our regional provinces in Korea, we plan to host the leading Korean tourism agencies in a fam trip organization in October and then make the travels begin to our region.”
“We aim to rise the brand value of Bursa in the international area”
Governor of Bursa Mr. Yakup Canbolat said : “ in harmony with the Turkey Tourism Strategy, we aim to increase the share and brand value of Bursa which has a high potential in many different fields of tourism in the balance of natural, cultural, historical and geographical values of the country through developing alternatives in tourism. To achieve this goal, Bursa Tourism Promotion and Brand Strategy studies are carried out with the cooperation of BEBKA and Bursa Metropolitan Municipality under the coordination of our Governship. This study aims at increasing the brand value of Bursa in the international arena.
Sharing the official figures related to tourism, Canbolat also said “according to the official figures, about 40 million tourists visited Turkey in 2018. Totally 46 million people came to our country with 6 million citizens abroad. According to the figures of accommodation facilities obtained from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, approximately 342.000 tourists from the Republic of Korea visited our country in 2018. The number of tourists visiting Bursa from the Republic of Korea takes a small place in 2018 with almost 2 thousand tourists. Considering the fact that Bursa has a high tourism potential and is also home to the history, culture and thermal tourism that Korean tourists are keen on, we have strong opportunities to increase this number.”
“We are determined to make Bursa a favorite of foreign tourists and investors”
Following the speeches, the panel section that was moderated by journalist author Ahmet Emin Yılmaz was started. The tourism potential of Bursa and the strategies planned to be made within the framework of tourism between South Korea and Bursa were discussed at the panel where Republic of Korea’s Ambassador to Turkey H.E. Choi Hong-Ghi, Turkey’s Ambassador to Seoul H.H. Ersin Erçin and Bursa Metropolitan Mayor Alinur Aktaş were the speakers at the panel.
Mayor Mr. Aktaş highlighted the need to promote Bursa more effectively in South Korea and said:” We give great importance to promotional activities. In this sense, we cooperate with our institutions and show up by opening Bursa booths in international tourism fairs and present our city. Tourism potential of Bursa is obvious. In addition, our most important advantage is that our city is a developed city for domestic and foreign investors. Bursa is a prominent city for investment with its thermal, nature, cultural, winter and marine tourism, industry and its all other features. I think we will have important business partnerships with South Korea in order to get mutual benefits. We are determined to make Bursa a favorite of foreign tourists and investors with its historical, cultural and health tourism potential.”
The gala dinner ended with the presentation of the gifts after the question and answer session of the panel.
Bursa tour of South Korean delegation
Having a series of talks in Bursa, Republic of Korea’s Ambassador to Turkey and Turkey’s Ambassador to South Korea also visited Bursa Governor Mr. Yakup Canbolat and Bursa Mayor Mr. Alinur Aktaş in their offices. The Ambassadors left Bursa with positive impressions after visiting the important historical and touristic places of Bursa, Ulucami, Green Mosque and Green Tomb, Panorama 1326 Bursa Fetih Museum, İznik and Cumalıkızık.