The number of Russian tourists to Turkey has increased by almost 81.51 percent in January compared to the same month of the previous year since bilateral relations between Turkey and Russia improved.
Exports to Russia, in the meantime, rose by at least 59.1 percent last month, for the first time in nearly three years, reaching $150 million, while imports the country reached $1.5 billion following a 10.2 percent increase.
In January, some 1 million tourists visited Turkey, 9.81 percent less than the number of tourists that visited in the same month the previous year. According to Culture and Tourism Ministry, the number of Russian tourists increased by 81.51 percent to 40,124 people in January.
Culture and Tourism Minister Nabi Avcı, in a statement in January, said the tourism sector, which is experiencing a significant recovery in the Russian market, will have a better year compared to 2016.
Turkish Tourism Investors Association (TYD) Chair Murat Ersoy said that the number of Russian tourists visiting Turkey was expected to rise to 5 million this year.
The normalization process that started off with a meeting between President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Russian President Vladimir Putin last year bore fruit in improving the bilateral relations between the countries.
According to Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat), Turkey's exports to Russia increased by 59.1 percent in January compared to the previous month, rising from $94 million to $150 million.
Income from fresh fruit and vegetable exports also increased during this period, reaching nearly $38 million, with the partial removal of a Russian embargo on orange and mandarin. If talks to reach an agreement in order to normalize trade with Russia are successfully concluded, customs and bureaucratic transactions between the two countries will be accelerated and will likely increase total trade volume.
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