Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Morocco Plans to Attract More Than 40,000 Indian Tourists by 2019

First it was the Chinese who were attracted to Morocco in large numbers and now it appears that Indian travellers will make up the next wave of new tourists

In an interview with India's press agency Press Trust of India, HM the King's ambassador to India, Mohamed Malki, said "Morocco, which has welcomed 21,850 Indian visitors in 2017, plans to double that number in 2019 by adopting several measures."

He said that the first step, to this end, is the opening of an office of the Moroccan National Office of Tourism (ONMT) in New Delhi to promote the destination Morocco to the Indian market with high potential.

"The opening of an ONMT representation, within two to three months, will enable us to plan strategic promotional programs in order to benefit from the Indian market that offers great opportunities," said M Malki, who previously held a meeting with some thirty travel agencies specializing in event tourism in the economic capital Mumbai.

During this meeting, organized in collaboration with the world's oldest travel agency "Cox and Kings Global Services", founded in 1758, the Moroccan diplomat reviewed the main tourist attractions of the Kingdom and the historical monuments which abound the country.

Mr. Malki noted that the measures adopted by Morocco are likely to encourage Indian citizens to plan their trip to this destination, adding that "with the expected increase in the number of Indian tourists, we need to facilitate the obtaining visas for Morocco."

On this occasion, the Ambassador of Morocco in New Delhi emphasised the deep relations between Morocco and India, saying that the governments of the two countries have reached an agreement on air transport to strengthen the between the two countries.

Morocco is banking on a strong presence in the Indian tourism market in the coming years, Abderrafie Zouiten, Director General of the Moroccan National Tourist Office (MNTO) said.

In an interview to the Arab Maghreb News Agency (MAP), at the end of a working visit to New Delhi, Zouiten said that India is poised to have a large middle class of nearly 300 million which can be tapped by the Moroccan tourism sector.

During his India visit, the ONMT obtained Indian permission to open a regional office in New Delhi in early 2018. Zouiten said the development reflects the “fruitful” cooperation between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Embassy of Morocco in India.

He said the opening of the second regional office in Asia, after Beijing, reflects the distinguished relations between Morocco and India.

He said that Morocco-Indian ties have been strengthened, especially after the visit of King Mohammed VI to New Delhi in October 2015 for the India-Africa Forum Summit. He noted that the Kingdom, through the new office in India, could position itself favourably in the tourism market.

Zouiten described as fruitful his meetings with Indian Tourism Minister K.J. Alphons, and officials and representatives of the tourism sector and air transport, saying the two sides discussed ways to strengthen exchange, expertise and cooperation in the field of tourism.

Zouiten said they would soon organize a visit to Morocco for representatives of tourist organisations in New Delhi. Cooperation and partnership agreements will be signed at the next joint working meetings between tourism stakeholders from both countries, he said.

He stressed that Morocco is keen to enhance its cooperation with India in the tourism sector, in harmony with its new orientation towards emerging Asian destinations outside the traditional tourist markets.


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