MOSCOW, September 28 (Itar-Tass) —— About 100 billion rubles will be allocated from the federal budget in the next eight years to develop domestic tourism, speaker of the Russian State Duma lower parliament house Boris Gryzlov said on Wednesday.
“Add funding from regions and municipalities, plus private investments, the sum is going to be pretty big,” he noted.
He said the money will go to develop tourist infrastructure, “from motor roads and airports to hotels and holiday camps,” among other things.
“I think it is quite possible to motivate more Russians opt for vacation destinations inside the country. So far, the figure is about 30 million people a year,” Gryzlov noted. “As concerns foreign tourists, the task in this area is still more daring – to increase the number of foreign tourists more than six-fold.”
Dwelling on vacation destinations, he said these may not be only in southern regions. “Great possibilities in this respect are in Central European Russia, with its mild climate and numerous historical monuments,” he noted.
According to the Duma speaker, Russia has much to offer in the area of the so-called “intellectual tourism.” “There are many countries that have a warm sea and mountains, but only Russia has the Field of the Battle of Kulikovo, or the Yasnaya Polyana estate (owned by world-famous writer Leo Tolstoy),” he said.
He stressed he had never favored any bans for foreign trips, even to countries with unstable political situation. It is up to a person to decide, where to spend his or her vacations, he said. “Nothing can be foisted off here,” he said.
“I repeat once again: the question is not in any bans but in the creation of conditions promoting Russian vacationing offers. I am confident we can do it,” Gryzlov said in conclusion.