The home country of the movie character Borat has adopted his “very nice!” catchphrase for a new tourism campaign.
A Kazakh tourism chief said the catchphrase, popularised by Sascha Baron Cohen’s character, offers the “perfect description” of the country’s tourism potential.
Kairat Sadvakassov, the deputy chairman of Kazakh Tourism, said that Kazakhs are some of the nicest people in the world.
“Kazakhstan’s nature is very nice; its food is very nice; and its people, despite Borat’s jokes to the contrary, are some of the nicest in the world,” he told the Huffington Post.
“We would like everyone to come experience Kazakhstan for themselves by visiting our country in 2021 and beyond, so that they can see that Borat’s homeland is nicer than they may have heard.”
The Kazakh tourism board has even released a trailer to go with the campaign, showing a tourist who describes hiking, drinking fermented horse milk, and posing with Kazakhs as “very nice”.
In 2006, the original film was denounced by Kazakhstan’s government, who threatened to sue Mr Cohen. The country even launched a multi-million pound tourism campaign to counter the film.
However, by 2010 a tenfold rise in tourism visas to Kazakhstan was attributed to Borat. Kazakh Foreign Minister Yerzhan Kazykhanov said: “I am grateful to ‘Borat’ for helping attract tourists to Kazakhstan.”