Turkey has taken steps to ensure safe and healthy tourism in the country, the Turkish foreign minister said on Thursday.
Addressing a news conference in Berlin with his German counterpart Heiko Maas, Mevlut Cavusoglu said all people working in Turkey’s tourism sector will be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Some 26% of Turkey’s population has already been vaccinated, he added.
Cavusoglu said authorities have made the certification criteria for accommodation facilities even more stringent.
“Practices to ensure safe and healthy tourism are in place. Last year, inspections were carried out twice a month. This year, there are four inspections in a month by companies from Germany, the UK, France, and Turkey,” he said.
Safety measures have been increased in tourism hubs such as Mugla, Antalya, and Izmir, he added.
The foreign minister said PCR tests will continue to be carried out at airports, hotels, and hospitals.
Cavusoglu stressed that Turkey is in a better position in terms of safe tourism, despite the worsening pandemic situation around the world this year.
The German foreign minister said his government was aware that its citizens desire and expect the country to move back toward normalcy.
He said authorities were discussing steps to facilitate travel in a responsible way, while maintaining necessary measures against COVID-19.
“We want to do as much as we can to make summer holidays possible this year in a responsible way,” Maas said.
He said the decrease in infections in Germany and Turkey, as well as the progress made by both countries in their vaccination campaigns, were positive developments.
Maas recalled last year’s agreement between Berlin and Ankara on safe travel corridors to facilitate tourism and said they will continue talks to implement the framework this year too.