For the first time in nearly two decades, the United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA) will hold in annual conference in Israel in 2013 on the invitation of the Tourism Ministry.

The ministry said Tuesday that the association's April 2013 conference will bring together tourism industry bigwigs from the United States looking to "familiarize themselves with Israel’s tourism product and be exposed to the many visiting options available in Israel."

The ministry added that while here, the American delegation will meet with Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov as well as industry leaders in the country.

Stas Misezhnikov said Tuesday that "the organization’s choice of Israel as the venue for their annual conference represents a vote of confidence in the Israeli tourism industry and in the quality of Israel’s tourism product."

He added that the ministry's NIS 60 million annual investment in marketing in the United States "continues to bear fruit.”

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