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Brazil is acknowledged as the country with the greatest natural beauty in the world, with the state of Amazonas concentrating most of those attractions. Despite that, the potential of tourism in Amazonas remains unexplored, with logistics being one of the bottlenecks.
The absence of logistics was pointed out by the manager of programs and projects of Empresa Estadual de Turismo do Amazonas (Amazonastur), Elísia Cristina Vasconcelos, as the main difficulty for the full-fledged development of tourism in the Amazonas. According to Elísia, if the sector was well structured, it would certainly become one of the cornerstones of the region’s economy.
“The airfares here are quite high. It is more expensive to go to São Gabriel da Cachoeira, located in Amazonas itself, than to Brasilia. If we look at Autaze, we find that the city has a great inner transportation flow, generating employment and income, however there is a lack of logistics focused on tourists, from abroad and from Amazonas as well, hindering their ability to travel in the region,” Elísia emphasizes.
In accordance with the latest Tourism Map, published by the Ministry in September 2017, Amazonas increased its number of cities in the tourist map from 14 to 30, in other words, cities that meet all the criteria to be a tourist point and service provider.
The PRT meeting is organized every year in Brasília, and only in six occasions it was held in other cities, and Manaus was awarded this year’s edition, welcoming the sector’s spokesmen from every state. “We battled to bring the meeting to this city, because we wanted all spokesmen of the country and the ministry to know our own vicissitudes,” Elísia added.
The tourism in Amazonas and its characteristics are deeply different from other states. For instance, in Minas Gerais it is possible to travel from one city to another in a few minutes. In Amazonas, it is only possible to do this in the metropolitan region. When it comes to the interior, the airfare prices are three times higher and it is impossible to use roads. Bboats are the only option left, since the state is rich in rivers.
Based on that, it is impossible to establish public policies for the Amazonas that are similar to other Brazilian states. The idea is the regionalize the tourism in Amazonas, by creating a municipal council for the cities.
Cóser pointed out that nobody does tourism without private initiative. “Tourism is a tripod with the Federal Government, local governments and private initiative. Tourism generates employment, income, social inclusion and nowadays has an impact on 52 other productive chains in Brazil. We come here and learn with the Amazonians. This integration and exchange of experiences are important at a time when budgets are tight,” he adds.