Maria Zakharova: "Development of tourist infrastructure between the Caspian countries can become a catalyst for the development of other spheres of international interaction"


The 2021 Caspian Media Forum was held on the basis of the Astrakhan State Opera and Ballet Theater. More than 300 representatives of the media community of the Caspian region countries arrived in Astrakhan to participate in the large-scale event.

The organizers of the 2021 Caspian Media Forum from the Government of the Astrakhan Region were the Ministry of Public Administration, Information Technologies and Communications of the Astrakhan Region, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Astrakhan Region and the Administrative Department of the Governor of the Astrakhan Region.

The forum began with three discussion panels. Journalists, bloggers, students, representatives of business, government and public organizations discussed topical issues of modern mass media.

The Astrakhan region has become a platform for communication and exchange of experience in the professional media community of the Caspian countries for the 6th time.

Opening the plenary session, the Governor of the Astrakhan Region Igor Babushkin expressed deep gratitude to the representatives of Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan for finding the opportunity to visit the region in difficult times.

This year, the main topic of the forum is “Tourism and Ethno-cultural Communications in the Media Space”. It is very important for the bordering Astrakhan region with its unique geographical position to develop the tourist attractiveness, to implement large projects in the humanitarian sphere, positioning itself as Russia's gateway to the Caspian Sea.

“We are confident that tourism in the Astrakhan region can and should become the leading sector of the economy,” said Igor Babushkin.

In the future, there will be additional opportunities for a comfortable and educational stay. The rich historical and ethno-cultural ties of the Caspian Five will reach a new level.

According to representatives of all Caspian countries, this topic deserves special attention, because the development of human civilization is impossible without a tolerant attitude towards representatives of neighboring peoples, their religions and traditions.

It should be noted that online inclusion of remote participants took place for the first time at the Caspian Media Forum. Thus, during the live broadcast, the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, noted that the format of the Caspian Five is an example of effective regional cooperation.

According to her, the development of tourism infrastructure between the Caspian countries can become a catalyst for the development of other areas of international cooperation.

It is planned to create a Caspian cultural and educational cluster in order to strengthen ties between the Russian bordering territories and neighboring countries, promote economic and humanitarian contacts, and develop infrastructure in the Astrakhan region.

Similar projects are already being implemented in four Russian regions. But the Astrakhan Government will launch an even more ambitious international project. In addition to organizing branches of the largest theaters and museums in Russia, the cluster will include an interuniversity scientific and educational campus for training highly qualified specialists in the field of culture and arts from the Caspian countries.

As a result, our region will be able to become the largest center for the development of humanitarian ties, securing the status of a priority geostrategic territory. This will make it possible to more actively implement international projects, and, at the same time, expand the possibilities of international tourist exchange, increase respect for the national, cultural and religious diversity of the peoples of the Caspian Five.

“Certainly, the most important role in this is played by the media, both traditional and modern social media. They have a significant impact on the opinion of society, the establishment of interethnic and interethnic contacts,” the head of the region addressed the forum participants. “Therefore, I very much look forward to continuing close cooperation between our countries in public space, actively disseminating information about the traditions and culture of peoples, launching joint educational projects and training programs. I am sure this will speed up the integration processes in the Caspian Sea, will serve to further strengthen international relations, and most importantly - peaceful neighborhood, friendship and mutual trust of our peoples."
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