13th meeting of the EUSAIR Thematic Steering Group on Sustainable Tourism
PRESS RELEASE - Zagreb, 8 October 2020
13th meeting of the EUSAIR Thematic Steering Group on Sustainable Tourism discussed current topics, announced a number of new activities and identified tourism "vitamin C" in the fight against COVID 19 impact on the sector.
Preparation and elaboration of "flagship" strategic projects in the development of sustainable tourism of the Adriatic-Ionian region, development of cultural routes, European Week of Regions and Cities in Brussels in October and COVID-19 were the topics of the international meeting TSG4 thematic steering group of sustainable tourism EUSAIR Adriatic-ionian strategy held online on Tuesday, organized by the croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports, as a thematic pillar of sustainable tourism coordinator for 9 countries in the region.
The themes of the TG_AIR, CulTourAir and DES_AIR projects earlier approved by TSG 4 for the further development and implementation, relate to the sustainable management and growth of EUSAIR tourist destinations, monitoring the needs of visitors to cultural and tourist destinations in the region and increasing the quality of education for integrated destination management. All three projects are focused on sustainable tourism and are in line with the goals of the European Green Plan.
Renata Tomljenović from the Institute of Tourism, contracted this summer in the partnership with WYG consulting for the preparation of "flagship" strategic conceptual projects into the application formats, suitable for applications to EU grants Calls for Proposals, informed the audience about the current results achieved.
Daniela Jelinčić from IRMO spoke about the establishment of the necessary knowledge bases and methodological frameworks for joint regional projects for the sustainable and responsible development of tourism, within the process of monitoring and evaluation of EUSAIR, which they carry out for the Ministry with ECORYS.
The results of the Routes4U program of the Council of Europe completed this summer were also presented, within which, in cooperation with EUSAIR, the development of two cultural routes was encouraged: The Olive Routes and The Roman Heritage Routes. Although its growth was slightly slowed by the pandemic, The Roman Heritage Route aroused great interest from all 9 EUSAIR countries, with a potential of 50 destinations. Vlasta Klarić, a thematic expert on the ESAIR FP project, reported that the number of members on The Olive Route has increased, with 26 new members from Greece, 31 from Croatia and 24 from Slovenia.
As part of the current European Week of Regions and Cities, the European Convention on Tourism will be held in Brussels on October 12, dedicated to the crisis of tourism affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and Croatian Minister of Tourism and Sport Nikolina Brnjac will also contribute to the event by the speech. The Week of the Mediterranean Coast and Macro-Regional Strategies just finished in Izola open the theme with a discussion on the recovery of tourism. It was then emphasized that greater consequences for their economy will have countries such as Croatia, Cyprus or Greece where tourism is present with a larger share in GDP or in the number of jobs.
George Drakopoulos, an expert of DG REGIO of the European Commission and special guest at the TSG 4 meeting, emphasized that this crisis is not like the previous ones and it is not known how long it will last. But the answer, Drakopoulos points out, could be contained in joint planning, coordination and co-operation on removing travel restrictions, rebuilding travel services and rebuilding tourism services. As a means which can act on the negative consequences COVID19 pandemic that currently feels tourism sector Drakopoulos recommended a kind of touristic triple Vitamin C: Cooperation, Coordination & Collaboration.
Within the framework of this online Convention, and based on research and studies, the European Commission will launch a dialogue on sustainable recovery and strategic directions for tomorrow's tourism. Find more information at http://www.tourism-convention.eu/