"We cannot leave tourism work alone! It is our responsibility as policy makers - at all levels - to conduct joint investment profitable side by side with the industry which wishes to innovate and has to innovate!"
With that words, Mr Patrick Torrent - NECSTouR President, Catalonia Region - presented one of the NECSTouR priorities for the future on the occasion of the High-level conference on "Tourism: a key industry to invest into Europe's future", which has been held on 27 November 2017 in Innsbruck (Tirol).
Building an European Tourism Partnership. The event has been the opportunity to officially welcome the Region of Tirol as the 37th member Region of NECSTouR. Moreover, on his intervention, Mr Torrent claimed all the tourism organisation and stakeholders to support a European Tourism Strategy and its involvement in the smart specialization platform on tourism of the European Commission.
An European Tourism Strategy. According to NECSTouR, such Strategy should implement: a coordinated framework for action; replying to a long-term vision; clear aims and objectives; involving all tourism stakeholders into innovative partnerships; answering what tourism we wish for Europe in 2030 and beyond, how much we can make it sustainable to gain in competitiveness. Indeed, as stated by Mr Torrent: "The next tourism will be sustainable or will not be!"
The demand for an own EU budget line for tourism. Why is Tourism the third biggest economy in the EU and there is still not any specific European budget dedicated to tourism? NECSTouR's President remembered how even the European Investment Bank recently underlined that transnational private partnerships are not yet leverage of tourism projects also because of that lack in the European budget and highlighted the need of Inspiring successful cases with tangible result for that.
Ongoing good examples. As remembered on that occasion, NECSTouR is supporting the “Digitalisation and Safety for Tourism” partnership, promoted by some of its member Regions under the Smart Specialisation - Industrial Modernisation Platform.