Croatia to Take Part in Pilot-Project “European Destinations of Excellence”

ZAGREB, 10.1.2006.

Croatia and nine other countries have been nominated for the pilot project "European Destinations of Excellence" with the subtitle "Best Emerging Rural Destinations", according to a decision adopted by the European Commission's Tourism Advisory Committee.

In a letter sent to the Croatian Ministry of the Sea, Tourism, Transport and Development, the EC says that Croatia has been short-listed along with Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Belgium, Cyprus, Malta, Austria, Italy and Latvia. This makes Croatia's nomination all the more important because it is not an EU member, the Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

However, considering its non-member status, Croatia will not have the right to a grant to which EU members participating in the project are entitled.

The announcement and presentation of awards will take place during the 6th European Tourism Forum, to be held in Portugal in late October this year.

The selection of the national winner in Croatia will be conducted by the National Tourist Board, which has established the selection criteria on basis of general EU criteria, including tourism offers and the economic, social, demographic, environmental and cultural impacts on the destination.

This project is aimed at promoting European tourism, i.e. the diversity and quality of the tourism offer of all member-countries, European regions and the awarded destinations. The project will also encourage other destinations to adopt models of sustainable tourism development.