San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Costa Rica seeks to attract more tourists from the Middle East

Costa Rica and Qatar on Wednesday signed the Central American country’s first open-skies agreement with a Middle Eastern country, aimed at boosting tourism from that region.

The Costa Rican Tourism Board (ICT) said in a press release that the agreement allows flights and airline operations between the two countries.

Tourism Minister Allan Flores said the agreement also will allow airlines to connect from other countries and transfer passengers between flights.

Air Transport Vice Minister Luis Araya said that in the last two years, Costa Rica has signed more open-skies agreements than in the past 100 years.

“These air transport links are vital in an economy in which tourism is our main economic development engine,” Araya said.

Qatar, an emirate in the Middle East, has the highest gross domestic product per capita in the world ($102,700), and Costa Rica hopes to become a favorite holiday destination for its nationals.

Contact L. Arias at

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