NECSTouR Vice-President, Mr Jan Korthoudt from Flanders Region, represented NECSTouR at the 4th Cruise Dialogue, gathering all the main representatives from the public and private sector interested by the Cruise Tourism.
The event of this year was organised in Nantes on the 25th of September and was focused on the North Sea, the Atlantic and the Arctic
Plenary. Mr Korthoudt made a first intervention in the opening plenary session, highlighting challenges and opportunities of a sustainable and inclusive cruise tourism besides NECSTouR experience and engagement for a Sustainable Tourism Management in the European Regions.
NECSTouR and the Cruise Industry. Several NECSTouR Regions are indeed deeply interested by Cruises. Mr Korthoudt highlighted how 7 of the 10 top-cruise destinations in the EU belongs to a NECSTouR Regions.
Challenges. In the last years, NECSTouR Regions are facing 5 main challenges linked with Cruise Tourism: The Carrying capacity; Seasonality; Water / energy consumption constraints; needs to balance the quality life of residents and visitors; and the preservation of marine resources and of the fragile marine ecosystems
Solutions. In order to face this challenges, NECSTouR regions are cooperating to develop regional policies who must bring solutions to these challenges and are exchanging their experiences and good practices in order to go further and learn from each other
Panel on Destination Management. In the course of the day, Mr Korthoudt had also the opportunity to animate the debate of a roundtable focused on "Integrated cruise destination management: port/city relation, cruise tourism impact on local economies and communities"
NECSTouR Priorities. At this regard, Mr Korthoudt presented the 4 main priorities of NECSTouR: 1) Integrating the port with the city/region, 2) Quality promotion and marketing; 3) Environmental sustainability; 4) Sustainable management.
NECSTouR Good Practices. For each of that priorities - which are specifically targeting one of the challenges previously presented - NECSTouR vice-President presented some of the main relevant good practices implemented by its member Regions, such as the strategic plan for cruise tourism in Andalusia, the Catalan trans-regional cooperation in cruise tourism, the charter for sailing and fishing ports in PACA, the initiative to encourage cooperation in cruise tourism in the Basque country and the MITOMED+ Project on Coastal and Maritime Sustainable Tourism Development.
NECSTouR Initiatives. Mr Korthoudt concluded by referring to the NECSTouR call for action “EU tourism for blue growth”, launched in the occasion of the last year 2017 (the International Year for Sustainable Tourism Development) to relaunch the EU blue growth strategy of the European commission and contribute in bridging with the un 2030 agenda.