This number was highlighted by private businesspersons from the Argentinian delegation that accompanied INPROTUR at the most important tourism expo in Brazil, held in São Paulo. The authorities made progress towards the recovery of air connectivity.
Argentina participated in the WTM Latin America event, held from April 5th to 7th in São Paulo, Brazil, where a delegation of 30 private companies providing tourism services in our country accompanied the INPROTUR and organized more than 1,000 business meetings, including pre-scheduled appointments and network meetings. At the same time, the attending authorities held several meetings with tour operators, airlines, Brazilian officials, and representatives of Brazilian entities, achieving positive outcomes in the negotiations.
This shows the recovery of inbound tourism from Brazil —from the opening of the borders in October 2021 until the end of March 2022, more than 400,000 Brazilian visitors entered the country, which means a 25% increase compared to the same pre-pandemic period.
Ricardo Sosa, INPROTUR’s Executive Secretary, informed that during all three days “the Argentinian delegation worked hard in all sectors. We must emphasize the presence of our Minister for Tourism, Matías Lammens, who accompanied us on the second day, leading several meetings and stressing the importance given to the Brazilian market. Also, the presence on the third day of Daniel Scioli, Ambassador to Brazil, with whom we are developing a comprehensive management plan for 2022 together with the embassy’s consuls.”
During his visit, Minister Lammens said, “Argentina’s great challenge is to recover the number of tourists visiting our country. This is very important for Argentina as it represents a source of foreign currency inflow —that is why tourism is a strategic and key factor for Argentina’s economic recovery. We had a record season in domestic tourism, and now we are getting ready for the challenge of receiving international tourists.”
Ricardo Sosa noted that “we had very good news from the airlines, and we got a positive assessment from Argentinian businessmen for the good quality of their meetings and deals. Brazil is the main tourist market for our country, and we were enthusiastic about the main Brazilian expo because of the news announced. The new routes of Aerolíneas Argentinas and the commitments made by other airlines show us that the inbound tourism recovery remains on track.”
Sosa provided some details of the results of the negotiations conducted and announcements made during the meetings:
— During the event, Aerolíneas Argentinas announced a new route between São Paulo and Salta with a stopover in Tucumán as of July, and also informed about a flight between São Paulo and Bariloche. Both will have a frequency of three weekly departures. Additionally, the flag carrier notified the increase of flight frequencies from São Paulo to Buenos Aires, reaching 28 per week as of July.
— During the meeting with Azul Airlines, executives were enthusiastic about returning to Argentina in the next few months and are already developing new routes to be announced soon.
— LATAM Airlines also expressed its interest in resuming flights to Argentina, since they noticed a “great demand from Brazilian tourists wishing to visit Argentina.” Work meetings will be planned in order to jointly generate and promote the new flights.
— The authorities of Gol Airlines expressed their satisfaction at the Aerolíneas Argentinas flight between Brasília and Buenos Aires, since by means of a shared code, they will be able to connect several destinations to the Brasília hub and, from there, to the Argentinian capital. Additionally, they will work for a prompt resumption of flights from São Paulo to Rosario and Córdoba and will consider the possibility of establishing new routes to Patagonia.
— Another meeting at WTM was held with Ethiopian Airlines, whose executives expressed the company’s interest in achieving daily flights by next July. This airline has 3 weekly flights from Addis Ababa with a stopover in São Paulo. It connects many destinations in Africa from the capital of Ethiopia.
— Additionally, Qatar Airways executives have once again shown their commitment to resume flights to Argentina in the shortest time possible. They are strongly interested in doing so before next November, which would help connectivity towards the World Cup in Qatar 2022.
— It was also confirmed that in 2023 Argentina would have 15% more tourists from cruises due to the arrival of six cruise companies with confirmed routes in our country, which will use ships with greater capacity and will remain longer periods. This news came in after the meeting with authorities of the Cruise Line International Association (CLIA).
— Meetings were also held with companies, such as Decolar, Braztoa, CVC, Orinter, among many other leading ones in the Brazilian market, offering packages and tickets to Argentina.
— A work plan was developed with Braztoa authorities to provide Argentinian provinces and operators with training in the Brazilian market, with a view to promote new Argentinian tourist destinations and products.
— During the course of the event, the Argentinian Consul in São Paulo, Luis María Kreckler, was also present, as well as the President of the Argentine Chamber of Tourism, Gustavo Hani, who represented the private sector; the President of the Federal Council of Tourism, Sebastián Giobellina; and the Secretary of Tourism Promotion, Yanina Martínez, who gave a presentation on the development of the Nation Branding. Ministers and secretaries from 15 provinces, and Argentinian tourist destinations were also present at the event. Furthermore, the Argentinian stand was distinguished as the best of WTM Latin America 2022.