The tourism sector will be significantly represented in Croatia's allocation for two key EU financial instruments that are currently being planned, namely the Mechanism for Recovery and Resilience and the Cohesion Fund from the multiannual financial framework from 2021 to 2027, she announced. Natalija Havidić, Head of the Sector for Strategic Planning, Digitization and EU Funds in the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, in the first panel of the second day of the 22nd Congress of Hoteliers.
According to the optimistic plan of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, the first tenders from the Mechanism for Recovery and Resilience could be in the summer months of next year, while the tenders from the Cohesion Fund are expected to start at the end of next year.
For the Mechanism for Recovery and Resilience, EUR 4,322 billion (70 percent of the total allocation) is planned for 2021 and 2022, and the remaining 1,628 billion euros (30 percent of the allocation) in 2023, he repeated. Milosz Momot, Deputy Director of DG Grow-Department for Tourism, Textile and Creative Industries in the European Commission. From the Cohesion Fund, tourism projects will be able to be financed in all project segments. The allocation for Croatia from the Cohesion Fund is over 9 billion euros.
Momot stressed that any member wishing to withdraw funds from the mechanism must submit its national recovery and resilience plans to the European Commission by April, which must demonstrate a comprehensive plan to strengthen the competitiveness and resilience of national tourism and the economy. The European Commission will not consider individual projects that are not part of the overall strategy, but only those that members prove to contribute to strengthening overall tourism and the economy. It is also crucial that each member in its national plans plans a minimum of 37 percent of expenditure on projects that have a positive impact on the environment and climate, and a minimum of 20 percent of expenditure on digitization projects.
According to Havidić, projects will be able to apply to all entities related to tourism, from companies, through associations and various institutions, and it will be possible to build accommodation facilities, which contribute to strengthening the competitiveness of overall tourism and the economy.
Revenue management and trends
On the second day of the 22nd Congress of Hoteliers, two more panels were held with expert interlocutors on the topics of revenue management and future trends in tourism.
Representatives of the domestic and world tourism industry participated in the panel on the topic of revenue management. Sandra Janković, Dean of the Faculty of Management in Tourism and Hospitality she pointed out that this year the domestic hoteliers have done an excellent job in maintaining the pricing policy and maintaining a quality position for a quick recovery.
Damiano Zennaro, Director of Global Consulting, IDEAS he pointed out that revenue management systems that make a significant positive contribution to business resilience are used globally by about 60 percent of hotels, but when we exclude hotels operating within large international groups, that share drops to only 12 percent, which should increase significantly. Ivan Bilandžić, Director of Revenue Management of Maistra dd he pointed out that all tourism companies will have to be 'data driven', which will be in direct dependence on their result. He boasted that they had gathered a very strong team of experts in Maistra, some of whom also have Olympic medals in physics. Gabriela Cojocaru, Director of Revenue Management and Business Strategy, Burgenstock Hotels AG she particularly commented on artificial intelligence (AI) which is strongly entering the tourism industry, and stressed that people need to be educated to use AI tools, as well as that everyone needs to upgrade their knowledge, not count on technology to replace people. All panelists agreed that revenue management will be key to success next year, but also in the coming years as tourist behavior changes drastically and uncertainty remains high.
Representatives of reputable consulting and hotel companies participated in the panel on the topic of new trends in the industry and customer experience management. Jochen De Peuter, from the Swiss Ecole Hoteliere de Lausanne (EHL) he said yes hoteliers need to further personalize the service and connect more emotionally with guests. For that, it is important to have a lot of information about guests and manage them efficiently. He also believes that it is very important to involve the local community and constantly look for opportunities to supplement the offer with new trends. Silvija Lovreta, Hotel Development Director for Southeast Europe, Marriot International pointed out je that they have significantly strengthened safety standards and announced the introduction of a new generation of standards regarding hygiene, food preparation and service and complete operations. The Marriott believes that the increased safety standard will remain even after the end of the pandemic. David Kelly, senior vice president of Continental Europe, Hilton the attitude is that people will want to travel after all this year, which is why he expects the start of the recovery of leissure tourism in the third quarter of next year, and city and MICE tourism in the last quarter of next year.
Photo: Valamar - Hotel Padova Rab