Hurriyet Daily News - Of the top ten tourist destination countries worldwide, only Turkey has managed to end the year with an increase in the number of visitors, despite the problems encountered in the industry worldwide, according to Turkey's Minister of Tourism, Ertugrul Gunay. “The income from tourism is correlated to the existence of high quality facilities. While competing countries suffered losses in terms of visitor numbers, Turkey stood to gain. We aim to increase the quality levels in tourism, thereby increase the number of tourists and the amount of spending per head”, said Gunay during the 12th Quality in Tourism, Skalite Awards ceremony, held at the Ciragan Palace Kempinski.
Speaking at the ceremony, where he was awarded the "2009 Skalite Special Award," Gunay said Turkey has managed to become one of the most important tourist destinations in the world through the devoted efforts of all. He said Turkey is projecting approximately 25 million tourist arrivals this year, but more than 26 million tourists have already visited, he noted, stressing that the amount of spending per tourist is expected to rise above the world average.