European interparliamentary conference on sustainable tourism opens

ZAGREB, 10.9.2014.

The first European interparliamentary conference on sustainable tourism, with an emphasis on the promotion of the cultural heritage and environmental protection, began in the Croatian parliament on Wednesday.

The event was opened by Croatian Parliament Speaker Josip Leko, who said tourism had become a global phenomenon and a remarkably propulsive economic branch which could help European countries reduce unemployment and come out of the recession.

The conference, organised by the Croatian parliament, drew about 100 representatives from 23 European countries and Morocco. Its goal is to strengthen cooperation between parliaments in tourism-related legislation.

Leko underlined the importance of drawing up national tourism development strategies aimed at preserving a clean environment and the cultural heritage.

Speaking of tourism's importance for the economy, he said its share in Croatia's GDP was about 15 per cent.

The conference is taking place in Zagreb and Losinj island until September 13.