By Andria Kades
The Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) is restructuring itself from within and targeting specific market niches in a bid to enhance tourism, CTO president Angelos Loizou told a press conference on Monday.
He said the changes were part of a series of new strategies making the CTO more resourceful and modernised.
“We have stopped generic attempts to market the industry and now have specific goals,” Loizou said. These included reducing bureaucracy, having an internal audit committee and improving cooperation with Hermes airport and embassies.
The internal audit committee will boost “transparency in our work under a completely legal framework”, Loizou said. The CTO is also in the midst of a study on how to reduce bureaucracy.
He said different types of tourism would be targeted in different ways. In order to boost religious tourism for example, meetings were held with the church and other relevant bodies.
Loizou said they were slightly disappointed in the hotel industry as it did not seem to have a specific campaign to attract tourist agents.
Recently, Cyprus has managed to secure deals with Germania airlines and German Wings.
During the winter period, statistics have showed an increase in arrivals with up to a 12.1 per cent increase in February. The CTO has credited the increase to their strong marketing despite the tight budget in 2015 of €23.5 million compared to the €60.5 million they had in 2009.
Currently, the CTO is focusing on the Middle East, Central Europe, the United Kingdom, Germany and Israel.
In terms of Russia, Loizou said he was pleased that Cyprus was managing to offset the fall in visitors by attracting tourists from other countries. He said there had also been a steady increase in individual tourists coming from Russia as opposed to those using tour operators which now stands at 80 per cent.