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Belarus, Iran interested in advancing cooperation in sport, tourism

Photo courtesy of the Sports and Tourism Ministry

MINSK, 23 September (BelTA) – Belarus and Iran are interested in advancing cooperation in sport and tourism, BelTA learned from the Belarusian Sports and Tourism Ministry.

Belarusian Sports and Tourism Minister Sergei Kovalchuk met with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Iran to Belarus Saeed Yari on 23 September. The sides continued building interaction to advance cooperation in sport and tourism since the potential of the two countries in these areas is rather high.

In October 2019 the Belarusian Sports and Tourism Ministry signed a memorandum of understanding in the area of physical education and sport with the Iranian Sport and Youth Ministry, however, the contacts were suspended due to the pandemic. Sergei Kovalchuk said he hopes that the situation will change and life will get back to normal. “We shouldn’t lose time. We have to streamline interaction between ministries, sport federations, and athletes and amend the legislation. Belarus is ready for it,” he said.

Sergei Kovalchuk and Saeed Yari also discussed education. The Belarusian State University of Physical Education trains specialists in the sphere of sport and tourism. The Belarusian side expressed readiness to provide assistance with training managers in this field. The relevant work is already in progress: the Belarusian State University of Physical Education is training six students from Iran.

Belarus-Iran cooperation in tourism is not systemic. However, new opportunities are available now, in particular, in the sphere of farm tourism and ecotourism. “Thanks to our natural resources and well-developed infrastructure we can offer recreation, sanatorium treatment, and recovery after COVID-19,” Sergei Kovalchuk noted.

Representatives of the two countries spoke in favor of mutually moving towards each other and enriching mutual cooperation. This is why both sides should put efforts into implementing the memorandum and should come up with new avenues of cooperation, Sergei Kovalchuk said.

In turn, Saeed Yari mentioned readiness to transition to sharing the best practices in the sphere of physical education by means of webinars and other forms of interaction. The Iranian side also suggested continuing the practice of organizing friendly matches in various sports.

During the meeting an agreement was reached on setting up a working group on sport. It will allow realizing provisions of the memorandum.


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