KHOROG, February 17, Asia-Plus - According to data from the GBAO police directorate, 750 tourists traveled to Gorno Badakhshan last, Shagarf Mulloabdolov, head of the GBAO branch of Tajik State Unitary Enterprise “Sayoh” (tourism), remarked at  a meeting in Khorog on February 16.

The meeting was held to discuss a progress of the implementation of  the program for development of tourism in Gorno Badakhshan designed for 2005-2015.    

During the meeting it was noted that the regional budget had received nothing from those tourists’ travels.

 “To date, some both local and international non-government organizations have engaged in tourism alongside other objectives mentioned in their statutes,” said Mr. Mulloabdolov, “For bringing tourism to more sustainable level of development a special program for development of tourism was worked out and the “Sayoh” branch was set up in the region last year.  However, there is no use of this to the regional budget.”  

“Unfortunately, the majority points of resolutions passed the governor have remained unfulfilled,” Mr. Mulloabdolov said, noting that the “Sayoh” branch does not have its own office and concrete address, where tourists wanting to travel to the Pamirs could apply.  “For this reason, we have also failed to conclude contracts with domestic and foreign tourism companies,” he said.   

In the meantime, employees of the Khorog branch of the “Sayoh” enterprise have worked out 22 automotive and on-foot tourist routes and last year, more than 400 tourists used services rendered by the “Sayoh” enterprise.  

“But revenues from these services were eve not enough for covering expenses on keeping the branch,” Mr. Mulloabdolov stressed, noting that they [revenues] would had been higher if the appropriate bodied had fulfilled requirements of the government’s resolution “on Licensing Tourism Activity and Compulsory Payments for Nature Use in the Republic of Tajikistan ”.    

On concrete services, these payments fluctuates from US$50 to  US$100 and could be sizable replenishment not only for the regional budget but also for the public purse, Shagarf Mulloabdolov concluded.