Mr Olle Jonäng, Senior Advisor at Region Västra Götaland, and member of NECSTouR Executive Committee, intervened on the occasion of the Baltic Sea World Heritage Summit (24 - 26 September 2019, Karlskrona, South Sweden) bringing experiences and recommendations by the NECTouR members with regards to the creation of attractive destinations for tourists in Europe by the use of local assets.
Inspiring Examples. Mr Jonäng provided a wide range of examples and projects, as different pictures of the same ambitious NECSTouR vision on that topic.
Cultural Heritage. CHARM project – Charming Villages has been provided as a first example of cooperation to create attractive and sustainable destinations in Europe in the field of Cultural Heritage. As Mr Jonäng well presented, NECSTouR is part of this project who will achieve a "4 D aim" - Deconcentration, Deseasonalisation, Diversification and Development of local communities - in Tourism, by promoting the most charming rural villages of Europe and making the most of CCIs technologies to provide an unforgettable experience to visitors.
Local Assets. Star Cities Interreg project is the second initiative promoted by NECSTouR and presented by Mr Jonäng. The project is about the development of local attractivity of 5 European Cities (Paris, Hamburg, Rome, Bucarest and Kaunas) by developing Sustainable Tourism (riverside) activities around on their main natural asset: the river.
Coastal and Maritime Tourism. An example of cooperation lead by NECSTouR to create attractive and sustainable destinations in Europe in the field of Coastal and Maritime (C&M) Tourism has been presented as well. A Single system of Indicators for Coastal and Maritime tourism management; an Online Platform enabling already 15 Destinations for benchmarking their C&M policies with other European Destinations and open for free to all the EU destinations; and a Maritime and Coastal Tourism Management Model (including also a Green beach model) are the main outcome of MITOMED+ Project.
Priorities. As highlighted by Mr Jonäng at the beginning of his intervention, all that examples are generated by the same vision inspiring the NECSTouR action: the "NECSTouR Five S for the Sustainable Tourism of Tomorrow" - Smart Destinations, Sociocultural balance, Skills and talent, Safety and Security, Statistics and measurability - Smart Destinations, Sociocultural balance, Skills and talent, Safety and Security, Statistics and measurability - and the Agenda 2030 of the United Nations.
Vision on tourism and cultural heritage. In order to responsibly balance the uses of cultural heritage, the demands of the tourism industry and the needs of the local community, that priorities are declined in the five principles of the Barcelona Declaration "Better Places to Live, Better Places to Visit" which has been launched in 2018 by NECSTouR to address the sustainability of the social and cultural impacts of tourism in Europe.
The panel was entitled "Using your local assets to create an attractive destination for tourists" and was also including Mr Burcu Özdemir (Unesco), Mr Max Dager (Karlskrona municipality) and Mr Yngve Bergqvist (Icehotel).
The Baltic Sea World Heritage Summit was aimed at gathering representatives from all coastal World Heritage sites around the Baltic Sea - World Heritage Coordinators, officials and politicians from the municipalities or regions, representatives from other organizations or businesses involved in the world heritage and representatives from the tourism industry - to debate around key topics for the area, including sustainable tourism development to help build inclusive communities, and efforts at all levels to protect and safeguard coastal heritage assets for future generations.