Thursday, 8 September 2022

New CNTB Campaign Seeks to Strengthen Continental Tourism

September the 8th, 2022 - The new CNTB campaign is focused primarily on boosting continental Croatian tourism, with so many sights and experiences to be enjoyed far away from the coastline.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Croatian Tourist Board (HTZ) and the Ministry of Tourism and Sport have launched the second part of this year's CNTB campaign which focuses on the rural parts of the country with the aim of generating stronger tourist traffic during the post-season. This new CNTB campaign is primarily promoting Lika and Senj, Posavina and Pozega, Podunavlje and Konavle in the extreme south of the country, the CNTB reported.

"Th new CNTB  campaign puts Croatian rural destinations in the foreground, as well as Croatian guests, with whom we're discovering the charm and beauty of continental regions through creative materials. Croatia offers much more than sunshine and the sea, and our task is to bring that wealth closer to both domestic and foreign tourists," said CNTB director Kristjan Stanicic.

He also emphasised his satisfaction with the results of the CNTB campaign so far, which, according to him, has been confirmed by the increase in tourist traffic in the continental counties of the country where - excluding the City of Zagreb - around 1.7 million overnight stays have been achieved so far this year, equal to an impressive 40 percent more than last year.

The Minister of Tourism and Sport, Nikolina Brnjac, noted that the goal of sustainable tourism development across Croatia is the stronger use of the continental part of the country's rich potential and year-round tourism.

"The rural areas of Croatia offer tourists all year round a lot of content, a handful of which we show in this new campaign, from activities in nature, enjoying an authentic gastronomic offer to exploring historical attractions and getting better acquainted with the culture and lives of the local population. Such content is increasingly attracting modern tourists, as evidenced by the fact that in the current part of the year, the tourist traffic in continental Croatian counties has reached 95 percent of the numbers realised back during the same period in 2019,'' said Minister Brnjac.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Friday, 19 August 2022

Minister Nikolina Brnjac Talks Changes for Private Renters to Tourists

August the 19th, 2022 - Croatian Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac has discussed upcoming changes that private renters renting out their properties to visiting tourists should be aware of as the Croatian tourism strategy looks at bumping up the hotel share in the bigger picture.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac recently spoke about the strategy of Croatian tourism, the current summer season and numbers for HRT. The share of hotels in accommodation in Croatia is still unsatisfactory, despite the fact that the most recent Croatian tourism strategy was to increase the share of hotels in total accommodation to 18% by the year 2020, but today the country still only has a share of only 13%, and the construction of apartments is continuing to heat up. How might we change that trend?

"Public invitations/calls have been completed, they will be announced soon, and investments in hotel accommodation are beginning. This will either take place through small family hotels, or through larger systems, we're looking at the green and digital transition. As such, by raising the quality and creating added value, we can change things, and this is how year-round tourism develops," said Minister Nikolina Brnjac for HRT.

What about the categorisation of family/private accommodation?

"This is also in our strategy, we have to distinguish between renting from the host and rentierism and this must be distinguished by economic policy. We'll make a new modernisation and categorisation of private accommodation with the aim of raising the quality itself,'' she explained. Brnjac added that the management of various Croatian destinations will show which ones are sustainable and in what way they're managing that, and many towns and cities are suffocating due to the large number of guests, which isn't something that can continue for much longer.

"We will need to draw a line, it's a tool that we will give to tourist boards, which will enable local and regional self-government units to decide what kind of tourism they want for their own respective towns and cities. It's very important for the country that we work to properly develop year-round tourism. Tourism in the continental part of the country away from the coastline should be further developed, for example through the health resort segment. Topusko is a good example of that,'' concluded Minister Nikolina Brnjac.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated business section.

Thursday, 28 July 2022

Conference On Green Transformation Of Small Hotels Held In Split

ZAGREB, 28 July 2022 - Tourism and Sports Minister Nikolina Brnjac on Wednesday opened in Split a conference on the green and digital transformation of family and small hotels, organised by the National Association of Small and Family Hotels.

A new brand in family and small hotel management - eco green hotels - was presented at the event, the Tourism and Sports Ministry said in a statement.

Addressing the event, Brnjac said that small and family hotels have a very important role in moving away from mass-scale, seasonal tourism and reorienting oneself towards sustainability and greater quality, welcoming the initiative to introduce the new brand.

She noted that the importance of small and family hotels was also recognised in the new strategy for the development of sustainable tourism in the period until 2030 and the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP), and that efforts would be made to direct as much as possible of the HRK 2.2 billion (€293 million) intended for tourism, towards entrepreneurs.

A total of HRK 1.2 billion (€160 million) is intended for direct investments in the private sector, including HRK 720 million (€96 million) for hotels, to help them transform Croatia into a year-round destination.

Brnjac said that strategic activities would focus on the green and digital transition, social responsibility of tourism, education and accessible tourism for all.

For more, check out our politics section.

Tuesday, 28 June 2022

Minister Brnjac Decides on Co-Financing for 77 Sports Infrastructure Projects

ZAGREB, 28 June 2022 - Following a tender for co-financing the construction and equipping of sports facilities in 2022, Minister of Tourism and Sports Nikolina Brnjac adopted a decision on Tuesday to co-finance 77 sports facility projects with a total amount of HRK 30.6 million, the ministry said in a press release.

"Accessibility of sports infrastructure for children, recreationists, and professional athletes in all parts of Croatia is one of our most important strategic goals, and this year we have allocated the largest amount of funds to build and renovate a record number of sports projects," said Minister Brnjac.

We also recognized the biggest challenge of local government units with up to 10,000 inhabitants, which according to an analysis conducted within the National Sports Programme, have the lowest rate of investment in sports, hence we have introduced a new programme intended for the construction of outdoor exercise facilities in these communities, added Brnjac.

"Of the 77 projects, 22 will be financed with more than HRK 3 million and this is our way of encouraging citizens throughout Croatia to play sports, and we are positively impacting the poor indicators regarding the general population's physical activities," Minister Brnjac said.

Since 2018, the government has co-financed projects for the renovation or construction of 93 sports facilities with a total amount of almost HRK 46 million.

A total of 261 projects were submitted in this tender with a total value of requested funds of around HRK 320 million while the funds will be awarded to the 77 best-rated projects.

The call for applications was aimed at encouraging the promotion of the value of sports and popularising sports activities for citizens, the improvement of the sports system, and Croatia's international promotion through sports.

To read more about sports in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.

Sunday, 26 June 2022

Croatian Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac Talks Tourism Success for 2022

June the 26th, 2022 - Croatian Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac has spoken about this year's summer tourist season, which by all indications is looking as if it will be an improvement even on the record, pre-pandemic year of 2019.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Croatian Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac joined a recently shown programme of the N1 Studio live show from the City of Osijek in Eastern Croatia and revealed whether or not there is any fear regarding the figures related to the ongoing spread of coronavirus, whether or not there are expectations fot this to fluctuate during the very height of the summer and how this could affect tourism as we go forward.

"Croatia has developed the ''Safe stay'' project together with the Croatian National Institute of Public Health. All protocols in that regard have been agreed upon. That project is now at the level of recommendations. The novel coronavirus is still very much among us and that's why we must all continue to make sure we do adhere to the necessary (remaining) measures,'' said Croatian Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac.

She also pointed out that we must be careful not to find ourselves in the dark red zone on the ECDC map once again, which would be an enormous blow to what currently seems like an extremely promising main tourist season.

"Over recent years, we've proven to tourists and residents of this country alike with this project that we are a responsible tourist destination. We have to take care that we are not dark red on the map. According to the last map, we aren't and I think that together we can take care to not end up geting into that critical situation,'' she said.

Speaking about the tourist results so far in 2022, she said that at the end of June, the country had already passed 20 million registered overnight stays.

"These numbers are extremely good," she said, adding that now, the Republic of Croatia has some extremely important projects related to the extension of the tourist season in order to go towards year-round tourism to deal with and perfect.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Tuesday, 14 June 2022

Minister Nikolina Brnjac Announces 1.25 Billion Kuna Payout for Tourism

June the 14th, 2022 - Croatian Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac has announced a massive payout totalling 1.25 billion kuna for Croatia's most important economic branch.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Ministry of Tourism and Sport has opened an e-consultation on a public call/invitation for grants entitled "Strengthening the competitiveness of enterprises and encouraging the green and digital transition of the tourism sector", worth 1.25 billion kuna, it was announced on Saturday.

Minister Nikolina Brnjac said that the aim of the call was to direct as much money as possible to tourism companies, meaning that a significant 60 percent of the total amount provided for tourism under the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NPOO), or 1.25 billion kuna, is intended directly for investments in the private investment.

"Of that, 1.02 billion kuna is intended for high value-added investment projects such as accommodation facilities and accompanying facilities such as theme and amusement parks and other innovative content in tourism, which will truly transform the Republic of Croatia into a year-round tourist destination," explained Minister Nikolina Brnjac.

She also noted that all interested parties (enterprises, companies) will be able to apply for the public call/invitation under equal conditions, but also that the criterion for selecting projects will be their quality and readiness for implementation, since the deadline for using the funds is the end of 2025.

Given the last two pandemic-dominated years which had an unprecedented and extremely negative effect on the economy, and as such on travel and tourism which accounts for as much as 20 percent of the country's GDP, announcements such as this one will provide an extremely welcome spring in the step of all those companies operating within the sector.

Consultation with the interested public on this public call will remain open until the end of this month, more specifically until the 27th of June, 2022.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated business section.

Sunday, 15 May 2022

Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac and Jadrolinija Management Meet

May the 15th, 2022 - Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac and the Jadrolinija management board's representatives have come together as the height of the summer tourist season rapidly approaches.

As Morski writes, representatives of the Jadroilinija management board met recently at the National and University Library in Zagreb with the Minister of Tourism and Sport, Nikolina Brnjac. The meeting was held as we're now approaching the main part of the tourist year, and Minister Brnjac commented on the current tourist results and expectations from the main summer season.

Along with the President of the Jadrolinija management board, David Sopta, the meeting was attended by various representatives of the Croatian tourism sector, including members of the Croatian Tourist Board and the Council for the Recovery and Development of Tourism, as well as representatives of hotel groups and other professional associations.

''The beginning of 2022 showed an increase in the number of transported passengers and vehicles on national and international lines compared to the same period in 2021. Participating in several tourism events, increased interest in our lines was noticed, so we're very optimistic about the recovery of the market and the return of group tourist trips,'' said the President of the Management Board of Jadrolinija at the meeting.

''The results so far testify that this year we've prepared well and taken all of the necessary activities to strengthen and upgrade the position of Croatia as a desirable tourist destination with high quality and a diverse offer. It's even more important that our emitting markets increasingly recognise Croatia as a year-round destination, which is an important component in the development of the sustainability of Croatian tourism.

When we talk about the value of fiscalised receipts issued for the first four months of this year, we can be very satisfied because on average each month had an increase of 10 percent compared to the same period back during pre-pandemic 2019,'' said Minister Nikolina Brnjac, adding that she believes such good results are set to continue throughout the height of 2022's summer season when we realise 70 percent of 2019's total tourist traffic and 63 percent of that same year's total revenues.

Representatives of the tourism sector said that the demand for Croatia has been extremely good, that the country is one of the leading holiday destinations in its main emitting markets and that they believe that this summer season will continue to yield good results with continued cooperation between the Croatian Government and the entire sector.

According to the Tax Administration, in the first four months of 2022, a total of 5 billion and 457 million kuna in fiscal receipts were realised, which is 170 percent more than in the same period last year, and when compared to the first four months of 2019, the value stands at an encouraging ​​11 percent higher.

So far, more than 1.9 million arrivals and 6.2 million overnight stays have been realised across Croatia, ie 172 percent more arrivals and 154 percent more overnight stays compared to the same period back in 2021.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Thursday, 31 March 2022

Foreign Tourists Generate €9.1bn In Revenue Last Year

ZAGREB, 31 March 2022 - Foreign tourists generated €9.1 billion in revenue in 2021, up 89% in 2020 and, it was equivalent to 87% of the revenue they generated in the record year 2019, the Tourism Ministry said on Thursday, citing Croatian National Bank data.

"We are extremely pleased with these results," Minister Nikolina Brnjac said. "Thanks to the government's measures and a good preparation by the whole sector, we have kept the tourism system stable."

She sees that as a confirmation of the big demand for quality tourism products and services, saying that the focus on quality and responsible business can ensure long-term success.

The ministry also cited the central bank's data for Q4 2021, when foreign tourists generated HRK 1.8 billion (€240 million) in revenue, up 116% on the year, and it was equivalent to 91% of the revenue they generated in Q4 2019.

Business: For more, check out our business section.

Tuesday, 15 February 2022

Digital Nomads Are an Interesting Niche for Croatian Tourism, Says Minister

February 15, 2022 - Minister of Tourism Nikolina Brnjac talked in Buzet with Mayor Damir Kajin about the importance of uniting tourist communities and the development and potential of year-round tourism with an emphasis on digital nomads, who increasingly recognize the interior of Istria as an ideal destination for their stay.

Stating that the focus during the talks was on the importance of uniting tourist communities, which Istria quickly recognized as important, Minister Brnjac said that tourist unions have the opportunity to use funds more efficiently, but also to better manage tourist destinations, reports Index.hr

"In this way, we contribute not only to a stronger recognition of tourist destinations but also to the creation of a system of sustainable and resilient tourism, which is important to all of us," said Minister Nikolina Brnjac.

Development of tourism products

She states that in the last two years the association of tourist boards has reduced their number at the level of cities and municipalities and that in 2022 more than 12 million kuna will be available from the Fund for United Tourist Boards for projects of joint tourist boards.

She reminded that back in 1997 the tourist boards of the City of Pazin, the municipalities of Sveti Lovreč, Cerovlje, Gračišće, Karojba, Lupoglav, Sveti Petar u Šumi, Pićan, and Tinjan formally united under the name "Central Istria" and the slogan "Authentic Istria", and they were recently joined on a project basis by the tourist boards of Buzet, Barban, Žminj, Svetvincenat, and Kanfanar.

The goal is the joint implementation of one or more activities aimed at developing a tourist product and promoting destinations in the segment of enogastronomy, active tourism, and cultural, historical, and natural attractions.

Digital nomads

The Minister also referred to digital nomadism as an interesting niche for Croatian tourism because nomads are not seasonal, but year-round guests and their interests are diverse and not necessarily related to the sea and the sun. 

At today's meeting in Buzet, they also discussed the importance of developing sustainable, year-round tourism, the new Sustainable Tourism Development Strategy until 2030, and the possibilities of co-financing projects from the mechanisms of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan. 

As it was heard today, in the County of Istria in the previous part of 2022 there were 115 percent more arrivals and 71 percent more overnight stays than in the same period in 2021, and compared to the same period in 2019, there were 5 percent more arrivals and 13 percent more overnight stays.

In Buzet, 115 percent more arrivals and 71 percent more overnight stays than in the same period in 2021, and 5 percent more arrivals and 13 percent more overnight stays than in the same period in 2019.

For more information about digital nomads in Croatia, click here.

Thursday, 3 February 2022

Minister Says Bookings in Tourism Sector Good, Vaccination Rate Must Be Higher

ZAGREB, 3 Feb 2022 - Minister Nikolina Brnjac and tourism sector representatives warned on Thursday about the need to have a higher rate of vaccination against COVID-19 in the country, calling on the sector and other stakeholders to be responsible so as to maintain the current good situation with bookings.

The tourism minister and officials said this after this year's first session of the Council for Tourism Development and Recovery, at which Brnjac informed sector representatives about work on a new tourism strategy and new developments regarding labor.

Brnjac said a new online system for the registration and import of workers would be put into operation on 1 March, which would expedite the process.

Speaking of the new rules of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), on which a country's color now also depends on the vaccination rate, Brnjac said that the vaccination rate in the Mediterranean is already much higher than in Croatia.

"Even though the vaccination rate in the tourism sector is around 70% and the sector was among the first to respond to the vaccination campaign, we call for maintaining a responsible approach because it is vital to avoid ending up as a dark red zone," she said.

Croatian Public Health Institute (HZJZ) assistant director Marija Bubaš said that all EU countries were now dark red on the ECDC map but that most that had a higher vaccination rate were expected to see a larger drop in infections than Croatia.

Hoteliers worried despite good booking

Even though the situation with bookings for this year's tourist season, notably summer, is good, the head of the Hoteliers Association at the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK), Josipa Jutt Ferlan, said hoteliers were worried about the increase in infections as well as the rising energy and other prices.

"We are actually again back to square one and we hope that all our efforts to fight the pandemic will not go to waste. One should really work on raising the awareness that the vaccination rate is insufficient and needs to be higher. That is why it is still too early to say if the start of the tourist season will be good or not," she said.

The head of the UHPA association of travel agencies, Tomislav Fain, said that the booking for this season was good and even better than for 2019, but he, too, warned that agency and other bookings in tourism and travel, in general, depend much on rules restricting travel, calling for making those rules uniform.

H​​​e also thanked the government for continuing its job-keeping support for travel agencies.

For more, check out our politics section.

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, make sure to bookmark our dedicated section and select your preferred language if it isn't English.

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