Azerbaijan starts second phase of monitoring travel agencies
Azerbaijan, Baku, April 4 / Trend A.Akhundov /
The Azerbaijani Tourism Agencies Association (ATAA) will begin the second phase of monitoring travel agencies next week, ATAA Chief Nahid Bagirov said.
"The monitoring requires time as the number of companies exceeds 200. But I think we will complete the monitoring in one month," Bagirov
Based on the Azerbaijani Culture and Tourism Ministry's data, 207 travel agencies officially operate in the country.
Bagirov said the ATAA carries out monitoring in Baku, where most company offices are located.
"However, we plan to check hotels and other travel facilities in the future. Then we will launch raids in the regions," Bagirov said.
The level of compliance among tourist companies with the Culture and Tourism Ministry's requirements is an issue that is subject to monitoring, he said.
"The monitoring reveals and deals with violations," he added.
The most common violation is a discrepancy between the actual and registered addresses.
"We have also identified a number of institutions performing tourism activities without licenses. They were closed in accordance with the law," Bagirov said.
The ATAA was created with the Tourism and Culture Ministry's assistance in January 2009. The board members include the CEOs of Improtex Travel, Caspian Travel, Pasha Travel, Silkway Travel, and Euroturizm.
The association protects the interests of travel agencies, develops bills, recommendations and regulations, and assists in establishing national travel companies. It also develops plans to conduct training and seminars for market participants, creates conditions for advertising Azerbaijani tourism at annual international exhibitions, develops domestic tourism, and presents tourism products on the world market.
The association also tries to develop and introduce congressional tourism and train specialists in management.