13 April 2016, Trabzon-Turkey
D-8 and ARDSI to strengthen rural tourism cooperation
Turkey successfully hosted the Workshop on Exchange of Information on Rural Tourism Policies between D-8 Countries and the Agriculture and Rural Development Support Institution (ARDSI) on 13-14 April 2016 in Trabzon, Turkey. Delegations from D-8 member countries exchanged views and shared information on the importance of production, distribution, trade, research and development in the field of rural tourism. 

In opening session, Dr. Seyed Ali Mohammad Mousavi, Secretary-General of D-8, stated that the agriculture sector also progresses in tandem with global economic environment and tourism has added to the agriculture sector over time. He underlined the importance of creating opportunities in rural tourism and said, “Since traditional tourism sector which is regarded as a growth sector has been facing serious challenges in terms of offering novel tourism products, rural tourism can play an important role to complement conventional tourism and provide an alternative source of income and employment to the economies”.

D-8 Member States were encouraged for further collaboration and partnership with ARDSI through this workshop. Participants from D-8 Member States would explore strengthening cooperation in capacity building, technical assistance and project implementation in the area of rural tourism. 

Rural Tourism Workshop is the second workshop organised by ARDSI under the framework of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between ARDSI and the D-8 on Agriculture and Rural Development Cooperation which was signed in March 2015. The first “Workshop on Exchange of Information on Rural Development Policies” was successfully organised by ARDSI in May 2015 in Ankara. The main component of the MoU is the transfer of knowledge and experience by ARDSI to D-8 Member States in the area of agriculture and rural development. This is to take advantage of ARDSI’s experience gained during the process of Turkey’s candidacy to the European Union. It may be mentioned that a delegation from African-Asian Rural Development Organization (AARDO) participated in the workshop under the auspices of D-8- AARDO MoU. 

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