Turkey plans hospitality centre in Pakistan

Islamabad :Pakistan and Turkey have agreed to establish a centre of excellence in tourism and hospitality management in Islamabad.

The plans in this respect were finalised during a meeting between Federal Minister for Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood and Deputy Minister for Culture and Tourism of Turkey Dr. Serdar Çam in Ankara.Both ministers explored further opportunities for collaboration in education, technical training, culture, and tourism sector.Shafqat Mahmood briefed the Turkish dignitary about the potential of the tourism sector of Pakistan.

He said that domestic tourism in Pakistan reached its peak during the current year but stressed the need for more efforts to attract more foreign tourists.

Minister Shafqat Mahmood also conveyed his gratitude to the people and leadership of Turkey for standing by Pakistan on issues of its core national interest, particularly the Kashmir issue.He also assured Pakistan’s support on issues that concerns Turkey. Both sides expressed the hope that the upcoming Pakistan visit of Turkish President Erdogan will provide further momentum to bilateral ties.

Earlier, the Pakistan delegation led by Shafqat Mehmood visited the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) headquarters and were briefed by its Vice President Prof. Dr. Birol Çetin about the organization’s global as well as Pakistan operations.

He said since 2010 when TIKA office was established in Pakistan, TIKA had undertaken about 148 projects in Pakistan in various sectors focussing on education, health, skills development, employment generation, and women empowerment. Turkish side showed a keen desire to do more projects in the area of technical education and vocational training.

Minister Shafqat Mahmood said that Pakistan is establishing National Skills University in Islamabad and the proposed Centre of Excellence in Hospitality & Tourism Management will part of it as its campus.He said the Pakistan government is revising the national education curriculum in order to make it relevant to market needs. This will include technical education and vocational training as a priority area.