Azerbaijan Tourism Board launches SAHMAN, to increase the level of health and hygiene in the country, for future visitors once #Coronabegone. By Tanvi Jain

 

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The Azerbaijan Tourism Board (ATB), together with the State Tourism Agency (STA) of the Republic of Azerbaijan, and in cooperation with Food Safety Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan (AQTA), has launched an innovative programme called SAHMAN (Sanitation and Hygiene Methods and Norms), which means ‘immaculateness’ in Azerbaijani. 

It’s a nationwide campaign set to transform Azerbaijan’s existing health, safety and hygiene standards, with the support of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). It also reaffirms the country’s commitment towards providing a world-class tourism destination for its citizens and future visitors alike in the post-pandemic world. ATB is in the process of finalising talks with international firm PwC to audit and certify these standards. 

 

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Sabahiniz xeyir

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SAHMAN has been designed to adopt a holistic approach, in order to fuel innovation across the tourism industrythereby ensuring the involvement of all relevant public and private partners, and the safety of those working in the sector. The programme will culminate with the launch of Azerbaijan’s Domestic Tourism Campaign this summer. 

Azerbaijan Tourism Board CEO, Florian Sengstschmid said, “The SAHMAN programme calls upon all stakeholders in Azerbaijan to adopt better practices in their businesses in the interest of safeguarding public health and supporting the regrowth of the industry. With this long-term shift in behaviour, we aim to ensure that these higher standards will be upheld beyond the current crisis.”  

 

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For the launch, the ATB and the STA have partnered with the Azerbaijan Hotel Association (AHA), Food Safety Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan (AQTA), regional municipalities and DMOs, with plans to invite other government sectors to commit to maintaining top-quality standards across the country. The programme will focus on accommodation, F&B and tourist transportation providers.  

Stakeholders will be expected to commit to sector-specific checklists introducing initiatives such as mandatory precautionary measures, safe distancing, disinfection, quarantine areas, cleaning methodology, and more. Participants will be supported and incentivised through three primary support programmes – Training, Amenities and Promotion – all of which will be financed by the STA.  

 

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Those willing to participate will have to first enrol for the programme via sahaman.az; then they will have to take online and onsite training and certification; and finally there’ll be labelling, and validation. The audit and certification process will be led by PwC“PwC is looking forward to playing a pivotal role in assisting ATB to roll out this new campaign and contributing to the tourism and hospitality sectors in Azerbaijan,” said, PwC Azerbaijan Managing Partner Movlan Pashayev. 

 

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The programme guidelines will continue to evolve, based on rules and regulations set by the World Health Organisation (WHO). These guidelines will be communicated to the participating partners by ATB in ways such as, including educational materials, trained ambassadors, online platforms (ex- webinars), a dedicated website and social media.  

 Related: 10 Most Beautiful Hotels Around The World You Must Explore Once #Coronabegone