Georgia expects tourism will recover from Russian flight ban

TBILISI, Georgia (AP) — Travel experts say a ban on Russian airlines taking citizens to Georgia will cause visitor traffic to drop significantly at first but they expect Georgia’s tourism industry to recover quickly.

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday ordered a ban on Russian flights to Georgia starting July 8 after a Russian delegation’s appearance in the Georgian parliament sparked large protests.

The move echoed bans Russia imposed in 2006 on flights and imports of Georgian wine and mineral water as tensions rose between the countries. The bans were later lifted.

Kakha Gogolashvili of Georgian tour agency Global said on Saturday that the 2006 Russian bans “at first had a negative effect, but new markets and new contracts were found. I think the same will happen in the tourism sphere,”

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