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Tourism minister, Italian ambassador meet over cooperation

By JT - Mar 17,2021 - Last updated at Mar 17,2021

Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Nayef Al Fayez meets with Italian Ambassador to Jordan Fabio Cassese on Tuesday (Photo courtesy of Italian embassy)

AMMAN — Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Nayef Al Fayez  and Italian Ambassador to Jordan Fabio Cassese on Tuesday discussed bilateral cooperation in the fields of archaeology and tourism, according to an embassy statement.

Fayez recalled that the two countries have been cooperating in the archaeological heritage field early as 1927, when the Italian teams began work in the Amman Citadel.

Cassese stressed that cultural diplomacy is a milestone for bilateral relations.

Italy is carrying out several projects worth millions of euros, from Shoubak Castle to the historic centre of Madaba and the Roman Theatre of Amman, among others, according to the statement.

There are six Italian archaeological missions supported by the Italian ministry of foreign affairs in collaboration with the Department of Antiquities as part of a 2017 memorandum of agreement.

The most ambitious project, according to the statement, is the establishment of the Regional Centre for Restoration and Conservation in Jerash, which is nearing completion.

Training activities in this regard will begin soon with the support of Italian institutes competent in this sector.

Jordanian trainees have enrolled in a course for cultural managers organised by the International School of Cultural Heritage of the Italian Ministry of Culture as part of exchange of expertise. The participants will contribute to the management of the archaeological parks in Jordan, the statement said.

Italy has also contributed to stabilise the Siq of Petra, (the natural gorge leading to the ancient site) to encourage youth employment in the Nabataean site. It also helped restore the Royal Tombs to develop sustainable tourism and provide training in the tourism sector through a budget support programme.

Collaboration will continue stronger because the common goal is to restart tourism after the pandemic, the minister and the ambassador agreed, the statement said.

The meeting was attended by Director of the Italian Agency for Cooperation in Amman Michele Morana, head of cultural office of the embassy Federico Vidic, Secretary General of the Tourism Ministry Emad Hijazeen, acting-Director General of the Department of Antiquities Ahmad Al Shami and Managing Director of the Jordan Tourism Board Abed Al Razzaq Arabiyat.

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