Ankara declares 2011 the year of Northern Cyprus
Seeking to promote Turkish Cyprus as an tourism hot spot, Turkey has declared 2011 the Year of Northern Cyprus. "We will promote Northern Cyprus as a destination to boost the number of tourists visiting the country," Culture and Tourism Minister Ertugrul Gunay told reporters Monday in a joint press conference with visiting Turkish Cypriot Prime Minister Irsen Kucuk. Turkey wants to share its deep tourism sector experience with the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) so that it can live up to its employment, prosperity and development potential, Gunay said. Tourism revenues in the TRNC rose 12 percent in the first 10 months of this year, while the number of visitors from Turkey to the island rose 15 percent, he added. Saying 2011 will be an important year for the TRNC tourism sector, Kucuk added that joint investments by Turkish investors and Turkish Cypriot entrepreneurs will strengthen both groups against competition.