Month: November 2020

  • More efforts look outside the box for outbreak signals

    first_imgJul 21, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – In the history of infectious diseases, coincidence plays an extraordinary role. In 1706, Cotton Mather purchased a slave named Onesimus who happened to come from a tribe that practiced variolation, and so smallpox prevention was introduced to North America. In 1928, Alexander Fleming happened to leave a window open in his laboratory, and the contaminants that drifted into a dish of Staphylococcus aureus provided the raw material for the discovery of penicillin.And in February 2003, a never-identified man in southern China emailed a query to an American teacher he knew from an Internet chat room, who happened to have been the neighbor of a US Navy epidemiologist. The epidemiologist, Dr. Stephen Cunnion, placed the relayed note on the electronic mailing list ProMED—and so the first notice of the international SARS epidemic was brought to the world, weeks before the Chinese government admitted the disease’s existence.Five years on, the example of that relayed note has inspired a broad-based effort to take the coincidence out of outbreak notification. It seeks to do by design what the never-named writer accomplished by happenstance: tap nontraditional sources of information, find and verify the earliest possible news of disease outbreaks, publicize the outbreaks, and possibly help contain them.Dr. Larry Brilliant, one of the chiefs of the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) smallpox-eradication effort and now executive director of the philanthropy Google.org, has dubbed the effort “two steps to the left”—meaning two steps backward on an epidemic curve, when an outbreak is much harder to detect but easier to control or contain.”Is it possible, or even probable, that if we better understood the complexity and magnitude of the many factors that lead to the emergence of infectious disease, that we . . . might be able to get early warning signals from satellites or webcrawlers or phone banks?” Brilliant said in March in a keynote speech at the International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases. “Or even better, that we could identify hotspots where newly emerging communicable diseases would arise . . . ?”HealthMap is latest entryThe emerging surveillance systems address the first of Brilliant’s “two steps”: They seek very early warnings of outbreaks by analyzing data that originates outside the public health hierarchy. The most recent entry in the field is HealthMap, created by epidemiologist John Brownstein and software developer Clark Freifeld at the Children’s Hospital Boston Informatics Program. It began as a pilot project in September 2006 and is described in the July issue of Public Library of Science Medicine (and is partially supported by a grant from Google.org).It joins older nonprofit tools including ProMED, a free Web and email-service of the International Society for Infectious Diseases (ISID); official surveillance efforts by public health agencies, such as the European Union’s MedISys and the Global Public Health Intelligence Network (GPHIN), operated by the Public Health Agency of Canada for the WHO; and new grassroots efforts by epidemiologists and computer scientists such as the volunteer effort WhoIsSick.org.Collectively, the new surveillance efforts give teeth to the revised International Health Regulations, which took effect a year ago. The revision formally recognized “informal sources” of disease news as worthy of attention and capable of triggering an international outbreak alert.The new efforts differ widely. Some rely entirely on human input, while others employ data-mining algorithms. Some are open to the public, others restricted to health professionals or government officials. And some are entirely text-based, while others take advantage of new technologies such as geographical information systems or GIS (the technology behind GoogleMaps) to display the location of outbreaks as precisely as possible.”No one system can do it all or will be able to do it all,” said Dr. Larry Madoff, editor of ProMED Mail and a professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts. “It is better to have multiple systems, because they provide verification for each other, and conversely show us what we are missing.”Unofficial sources offer speedWhat the new surveillance systems share is a refusal to depend on data from public health’s established reporting systems, which rely on electronic or paper reports filed by physicians or local health departments and passed layer by layer through the public health hierarchy. Those reports may be exquisitely accurate, because they originate with medical professionals, but they are slow.The new systems balance the risk of sacrificing accuracy against the need for speed, which they get by harvesting and evaluating news stories, blog posts, listserv discussions, and whatever else can be spotted by eye or scraped by a Web-crawling program.ProMED, which began in 1994 and has operated with ISID’s support since 1999, is the most labor-intensive: It relies on 37 volunteer editors who examine submissions from a global network of official “rapporteurs” and casual correspondents. It also has the lowest-bandwidth: Though it maintains a website, many of its global subscribers rely on its text-only emails, which move easily even through computers connecting by dial-up.GPHIN, running on the WHO’s behalf since 1997, automatically samples two major Internet news aggregators and machine-translates stories in eight languages; the harvested stories are reviewed by humans before they are sent out to a subscription-only network. It is credited with turning up the earliest hint of SARS in November 2002, in a Chinese-language account of a rise in respiratory disease complaints in local emergency rooms.HealthMap, the newest entry, expands on the sources the other systems draw from: It performs fully automated Web-scraping from 14 aggregate sources that collect data from approximately 20,000 sites. It currently collects in English and machine-translates from four other languages, with three more under development. The reports it collects are automatically sifted for duplicates and mistakes, ranked by urgency, and sorted and posted by source, date, location, and disease.Its striking innovation is real-time mapping of the news it gathers. Reports are coded with latitude and longitude and “pinned” to a world map; clicking on the pins produces links to the reports that the system has gathered. The collective result—map plus links plus reports—is gathered into a single open-access Web page.”We realized there is so much content out there on the Web, and that information is scattered in an unorganized, unstructured way,” said Brownstein, who is an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School in addition to his Children’s Hospital informatics appointment. “So for any particular person—a public health official, an international traveler, a travel clinic, or whatever perspective you come from—to know what is going on at any given time, in any given country, around any given infectious disease is essentially impossible without massive amounts of manual queries and searching that is overly burdensome.”Maps provide extra dimensionThe latest movement in novel reporting is the deployment of sophisticated but easy-to-use tools such as GIS-mapping for very local surveillance. It was the inspiration for WhoIsSick.org, a private project by California software engineer PT Lee that aggregates personal reports of illness into “crowdsourced” snapshots of local disease trends.It was also used recently by the Toronto Star, whose “Map of the Week” project plotted the vaccination-exemption rates of local schools to suggest where an ongoing measles outbreak might strike next. And in the July/August issue of Public Health Reports, researchers from Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx map the location and quality of food sources and exercise areas to illuminate local rates of diabetes and obesity.Developers of the new surveillance systems agree that incorporating local reports is the necessary next step in the systems’ evolution. It may be the most challenging: Data gathered by amateurs is likely to include a higher percentage of inaccurate or irrelevant reports. But it may also be the only route by which areas with no official disease surveillance—or with tight political controls on disease reports—can share information with the rest of the world. In fact, representatives of the public health systems from 23 countries called for enhanced disease surveillance in a December 2007 “call for action,” asking industrialized countries to help improve disease reporting especially in Africa and South Asia.Cell-phone text-messaging has already been used in India to report suspected cases of avian flu to provincial animal-health authorities. A new nonprofit named InSTEDD (Innovative Support to Emergencies, Diseases and Disasters) has received grants from the Rockefeller Foundation  and Google.org’s Predict and Prevent Initiative to bring rapid disease-reporting tools to Mekong Basin villages in Southeast Asia.HealthMap’s founders are working on a pilot project, using ProMED’s volunteer moderators, that will test combining machine-harvested reports with human-evaluated ones. “The vision down the road is it would be a two-way line of communication, not just receiving or curating information [but] also inputting new data,” Brownstein said. “That would be the concept that would open this up to the global community.”See also: HealthMap sitehttp://www.healthmap.org/PLoS Medicine article describing HealthMapOriginal ProMED post on SARSMedISys home pagehttp://medusa.jrc.it/medisys/homeedition/all/home.htmlGPHIN home pagehttp://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/gphin/WhoIsSick home pagewww.whoissick.orgMay 2007 CIDRAP News story discussing WhoIsSick.orgLefer TB, Anderson MR, Fornari A, et al. Using Google Earth as an innovative tool for community mapping. Public Health Reports 2008 Jul/Aug, 123(4):474-80InSTEDD Mekong Basin Collaborationhttp://www.instedd.org/our-work/projects/last_img read more

  • Tourist destination management – an example of good practice

    first_imgAustrian “Zagorje”Imagine a continental region (tourist destination) of 1.145 km2, with 103.000 inhabitants, 79 municipalities and 4 subregions (districts), in which the largest city has 4.614 inhabitants. There are no companies with more than 300 employees in the region, no high mountains suitable for winter and summer tourism, but there are no large arable lands because it is intersected by hills… Upon joining the European Union, the competitiveness of small agricultural production and secondary related activities deteriorated sharply. The future was not bright.Cooperation – coordination – actionThen one mayor in the relaxed atmosphere of a local inn in the company of colleagues said they had to do something… Thus began the revival of the economically weakest Austrian region – Lower Styria where the average gross salary ranges between 1.820 and 1.890 Euros (Austrian average around 2.500 Euros).LAG – development and branding agencyThey founded the LAG – Local Action Group funded by municipalities. At the head of the LAG is Mag. Michael Fend, an experienced leader with a lot of volunteer experience in humanitarian actions in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia and a Croatian son-in-law. The LAG has crystallized a vision of development based on all the resources of the region, which are viewed in a negative and positive aspect. They decided to brand themselves as the “Land of Volcanoes” because a large volcano was active in the area millions of years ago, the outlines of which can still be seen today. Material evidence of such a past is the composition of the soil as well as thermal water. Volcanic earth gives birth well, the volcano represents progressiveness, activity, so such a “brand name” is gladly accepted. “Vulkanland” is positioned as a gastronomic region, a region of crafts and handicrafts, a region that preserves its culture of living and which has decided to become energy independent by 2025.This was followed by active work on EU funds, but also on connecting stakeholders in agricultural production and processing of agricultural products. Thus, 70 wheat-producing farms have teamed up with one mill and bakeries to produce regional flour from which regional bread is produced in order to achieve a better and guaranteed purchase price of wheat. Other farmers are encouraged to process or to cooperate with local processors. This is how the famous producers of prosciutto and dried pork “Vulcano” were born, then winemakers (one of the most famous is Thaller), producers of brandy, liqueur and vinegar (Golles) and many others. The processing of agricultural products is presented as “Culinary Products”, ie high-value products for gastronomy. Today they have 63 producers under the brand “Steirisches Vulkanland”, then 52 craftsmen, 30 centers for the renewal of life energy „Quality clubsNew “quality clubs” are constantly being created. Thus, 26 households that arrange gardens were interconnected. They socialize with each other, exchange experiences and hold “open days”. They annually organize 112 various events on the topic of horticulture and make 20.000 visits. They are mainly engaged in tourism, and on that basis they achieve better results.Photo: sagen.atFewer municipalities – more efficient development managementIn the meantime, the number of municipalities has been reduced to 33, and many companies that pay the annual membership fee have voluntarily joined the LAG and thus acquire the right to display the “Vulkanland” logo. Unemployment is low, around 5%, the region now has 3% more young people under 19 than the Austrian average, but also 5% more population over the age of 65. They also have 17% more population with more family members, 82% more employees in the primary sector than the Austrian average, 2% more in the secondary sector.There are 3,3% foreigners, 8% of the economy is engaged in tourism and leisure, crafts 54%, trade, brokerage, management 25%, information consulting 8%. Of the schools, they have 44 primary, 16 secondary, 1 special, 8 polytechnic, 2 more for production occupations, 1 higher for tourism and 1 higher for kindergarten teachers. In the regional administration for social development, in addition to mag. Fenda, who leads the LEADER programs, also has Dr. Beatrix Lenz and mag. Stefan Preiningen in charge of youth.A combination of agriculture and tourismThe main feature of agricultural processing companies is their orientation towards organic production, “fair trade” principle, innovation and all have well-organized tours of production facilities with tasting that is well paid and well-organized shops at the place of production. Most of the products are sold in Austria and all of them have a respectable number of regular customers – individuals to whom the goods are delivered directly (Thaller as many as 13.000 people). Production facilities are becoming top tourist attractions that record a steady increase in visits. The chocolate maker Zotter went the furthest on this issue, whose complex stretches over thirty hectares on which there is a real small zoo, fruit and vegetable production, entertainment for children, restaurant… and the chocolate factory itself offers an unforgettable experience to every visitor. Innovations in the production of wine, brandy, liqueurs, cheeses, prosciutto… innovative way of presenting these products, excellent organization of direct sales, give results of above-average sales prices, high product value and satisfaction of all stakeholders in such “fair trade” trade.There are more and more other tourist facilities such as hiking and cycling facilities, they are being developed regionally and implemented locally. Spas, castles, museums, sports facilities with sports hotels… all this raises the participation and importance of tourism in the overall economy. “Steirische Vulkanland” is a small region that provides a great lesson in connecting the community into a sustainable microeconomic model.Whoever wants, can learn, see but also spend – a lot. A tour of the “Steirische Vulkanland” is worth every Euro.Published by: Nedo Pinezićlast_img read more

  • The seventh International Tourism Fair PLACE2GO was presented

    first_imgThe biggest so far, the seventh International Tourism Fair PLACE2GO is being held from March 16 to 18 in Arena Zagreb!Seychelles, Zanzibar and Ivory Coast are presented for the first time, and exhibitors from Indonesia, India, Canada, Italy, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Tunisia, Turkey, the United Kingdom, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Macedonia, Slovenia and Serbia are coming to Zagreb again. , Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia.”I am especially pleased with the fact that new destinations join us every year. I hope that the seventh PLACE2GO will be full of positive emotions and experiences and that it will result in unforgettable trips and concluded deals. We have a great desire to present even more Croatian destinations at the fair, because I am firmly convinced that there are many more unexplored beauties in our country.”, Said Damjana Domanovac, director of the fair PLACE2GO.Satisfaction with the long-term cooperation was expressed by Uğur Cantimur, director of Turkish Airlines for Croatia, an airline that has been confirming its loyalty to the project for five years as a general sponsor. “For an airline that flies to the most countries and international destinations in the world, PLACE2GO is the ideal platform to present our unparalleled network of flights and numerous award-winning services to regular and potential passengers. We are extremely proud that this year marks the 20th anniversary of doing business in Zagreb. We are happy to transfer part of the celebration to the fair and in that way once again thank our partners and passengers for their trust all these years.and “, said the director of Turkish Airlines for Croatia.PLACE2GO has been supported from the beginning by the City of Zagreb and the Zagreb Tourist Board. “The fair is an exceptional opportunity to create contacts and follow global trends in the field of tourism and I hope that this year we will create a basis for the adoption of many examples of good practice and successful and fruitful cooperation with many business partners.”, Said Jelena Pavičić Vukičević, Deputy Mayor of the City of Zagreb.In the meantime, there is no need to worry about it. ”PLACE2GO 2017 from Place2go on Vimeo.Martina Bienenfeld, director of the Zagreb Tourist Board, congratulated the organizers on their efforts to hold this year’s fair in the prestigious Arena Zagreb. “I would like to invite everyone to visit the exhibition space of the Tourist Board of the City of Zagreb, where we present the project “Culture of Tourism” launched in 2010 in cooperation with the City Office for Education, Culture and Sports, and it aims to raise awareness , cultural and natural potentials of Zagreb”, Pointed out Martina Bienenfeld.The perfect opportunity for business networkingTraditionally, the first day of the fair – Friday, March 16, is intended exclusively for business meetings. Meetings are arranged in advance by way of mobile applications PLACE2GO for Android and iOS systems which significantly speeds up business communication. On that day, visitors can expect interesting panels, lectures and presentations and an attractive workshop on innovative technological solutions, which will be attended by representatives of the IT industry.”At the panel and workshops on Innovative technological solutions in tourism, you will be able to learn all about our mobile hotel application, property management system and interactive TV system and technological trends that our hoteliers increasingly recognize and include in their offer, e-charging stations and e-bikes . By expanding the eco-system of services specialized for the hotel and tourism industry and ensuring the availability of state-of-the-art technologies in one place, we want to enable our hotels to stand on an equal footing with world players.”, She pointed out Ivana Beli Oštarčević, Director of the ICT Offer Department of Hrvatski Telekom, which sponsors the Business Lounge.More than 180 exhibitors from 21 countries, attractive prize games, a great opportunity for business networking, workshops, panels, guest travel writers and bloggers – visit one of the most attractive tourism fairs in the regionThe most famous travel writers and bloggers talk about travelCamping Square and Adventure Village, autochthonous Croatian souvenirs, new trends in the travel industry, attractive hotels, wellness centers, cocktail PLACE2GO created as a result of cooperation Obala promet and Filip Lipnik, prize games in which you can win tickets to Istanbul and Dublin or a trip to Tunisia, are just part of the rich program that awaits you for the weekend.This year, the most famous Croatian bloggers and travel writers will be guests, so visitors will enjoy the stories of journalists Goran Milić, the experiences of singer Mirela Priselac Remi, African adventures Saša Pjanić, Damir Filipović and Ivan Raka. Dejan Nemčić will talk about humanitarian work, a Vlado Šestan will give some travel tips. Goran Jovic will discover what he experienced on a trip to Latin America and Tanzania, there are stories from the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia, Bali, but also details from a gourmet trip to Germany. Travelers and  Ivan Bengeri will discover how to get to the cheapest trips and whether a 1300 kuna ticket to New York is a matter of luck or skill, and the program manager Ida Prester, and the experienced traveler herself, will discover the details of her favorite trips.The sponsors of this year’s fair are the President of the Republic of Croatia Kolinda Grabar Kitarović, the Ministry of Tourism, the Croatian National Tourist Board, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce and the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts.Admission to PLACE2GO is free this year as well, and you can see the entire program of events at: www.place2go.orglast_img read more

  • BTravel and the European Volleyball Federation have signed a cooperation agreement

    first_imgThese days, the travel agency BTravel has signed a cooperation agreement with the European Para-Volleyball Federation (PARRA VOLLEY EUROPA, PVA), and thus has become its official travel agency for the next period of 4 years. With this signing, BTravel also became the first Croatian agency of a European sports federation.The signing of the contract was held as part of the International “Zagreb Open” in sitting volleyball, which was organized on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the founding of OKI Zagreb (Volleyball Club for the Disabled Zagreb). The contract was signed by the president of PVE Branko Mihorko, who is also the selector of the Slovenian national team, and the president of the BTravel agency Dalibor Bilić.The joint cooperation will include BTravel agency’s support to the European Parabolic Federation in terms of organizing all types of travel, travel to sports preparations and various other competitions, organization of airline tickets, hotels, transfers and the like, as well as support to PVE in organizing their events. “In the future, we plan to increase the number of PVE official competitions, and as a consequence, more frequent trips of nominated officials. For this purpose, we chose BTRAVEL from Zagreb, a travel agency that imposes itself on the market as one of the leading travel agencies in this area of ​​Europe (offices in Ljubljana and Belgrade) and which in its offer pays special attention to sports and sports travel. I would also like to thank BTravel for its efforts so far for the upcoming PVE Strategy Dialogue, which will take place in October 2018 in St. Martin na Muri (Croatia). ” said Branko Mihorko, president of the European Para-Volleyball Federation, when signing the contract.The signing of the contract with the European Paravoley Federation is just a continuation of the company’s development in the segment of sports tourism to the European market, which we set at the very beginning. I am convinced that together we will help the development of PVE in all segments on a partnership basis, said Dalibor Bilić, President of the Management Board of BTravel Agency.ANTE ANČIĆ BECAME DIRECTOR OF SPORTS DEVELOPMENT OF BTRAVEL AGENCYUntil recently, the director of the European Handball Championship for the City of Zagreb, Ante Ančić, became a new member of the BTravel agency, one of the fastest growing Croatian and regional tourist agencies.Ante Ančić in BTravel is engaged in the position of director for sports development and one of the main projects he will develop is the placement of Croatia on foreign markets as an ideal destination for sports preparations, but also for sporting events. Ante Ančić will also be responsible for taking over some new acquisitions of BTravel in Croatia. “I am extremely proud of the fact that our agency has signed its first contract with a sports organization at the European level. The main reason for my arrival at BTravel was the expansion of business to the European market, which was started with this contract.. ”, Pointed out Ante Ančić, the new director of sports development at BTravel.last_img read more

  • FairBnB is being launched, a “fairer” alternative to Airbnb

    first_img“The other difference is that 50 percent of the commission will be used to fund community projects.” FairBnB prices will be similar to Airbnb, but commissions will be lower and the structure different. Only 50 percent of the commissions will go to the management of the platform. Over time, FairBnB will probably reach the Croatian market and it will be very interesting to see how it will affect the image of tourism in private accommodation and whether it will create healthy competition for the titanic Airbnb. The first difference FairBnB makes is transparency and legality. “We want to work with governments. That is why we are very strict with the rule “one host – one home”. We also want to pay taxes at the local level and be completely transparent, “Veracruz said. But perhaps the biggest difference is in the cooperation. “The platform is owned by a group of people participating in the project, the salaries in the cooperative are limited and everything is very transparent,” explains Veracruz. “Over time, the plan is to expand the cooperative and thus give investors and renters the opportunity to participate in the business of the platform.” Airbnb was launched almost 11 years ago and during that period has established itself as one of the leading services for renting private accommodation. In terms of entrepreneurship and innovation, Airbnb is an exceptional company. The idea of ​​the service is very simple – to provide tourists with a very fast, efficient and intuitive way of renting accommodation. The company is worth over $ 2 billion today and the service is available in almost every country in the world, reports The Next Web. FairBnB.coop But Airbnb’s huge popularity brings a number of problems. Many cities cite Airbnb as an important factor in rising rents, lack of accommodation, gentrification and similar disruptive effects on tourism. For these reasons, Sito Veracruz and his partners decided to launch a “fairer” and better alternative – FairBnB. “I was very optimistic about Airbnb at first because I saw the tourism potential of such platforms for smaller communities,” explains Veracruz. “But what I did not anticipate is the extent to which such platforms will be based on profit. “When you realize that 20 percent of service users make 80 percent of the profits, you know something is wrong.” Veracruz is very optimistic and predicts a bigger expansion of FairBnB within two years, with the help of communities. “Our development strategy is based on local communities – in business, marketing and everything else.”last_img read more

  • Buses and trams of European cities painted with Croatian motifs

    first_imgTrams, buses and trolleybuses, ie public city transport of many European cities such as Milan, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kiev, Lviv, Brno, Plzeň, Amsterdam, The Hague, Stockholm and other cities in the most frequent locations are painted with Croatian motifs. “The visual effect has been proven to attract a lot of attention from a multitude of people and create a strong and long-lasting experience for potential tourists. Large outdoor advertising on the busiest roads of major European cities and metropolises is one of the projects realized as part of an additional 10 million kuna for marketing and PR activities in emitting markets this year.” pointed out the director of the Croatian Tourist Board Kristjan Staničić, adding that the external advertising of Croatia as a tourist destination was carried out through billboards in the extremely busy London and Paris metro, but also in Prague, Ljubljana, Rotterdam, etc. Advertising is carried out in two waves, ie now in May and in September and October. The activities within the campaign include display and print advertising in specialized media and promotion on social networks, and it is carried out on the market of Great Britain, Germany, Italy, France, USA, Benelux, Sweden, Norway, but also Croatia. Also, as they point out from the Croatian National Tourist Board, a million kuna promotional campaign for business tourism has been launched, which aims to position Croatia as a tourist destination suitable for MICE tourism.  Promotion of business tourism in nine world markets “The campaign focused on the promotion of business tourism is a continuation of our continuous investments in the promotion and development of this important tourist product. Croatia has great potentials in this segment of travel due to the quality of the resource base, but also due to the excellent references, which is confirmed by the well-done hosting of the last major international gathering China +16, which was recently held in Dubrovnik.”, concluded Staničić. This is the result of the CNTB’s ongoing promotional campaign, which consists of outdoor advertising in key emitting markets such as the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Sweden, Italy, France, the Czech Republic, Russia, Ukraine and Slovenia. last_img read more

  • HGK: The situation in tourism is improving, but everything will depend on the results in the peak season

    first_imgU vezi najave poskupljenja ulaznica u nacionalne parkove, Pende je rekao kako je stav Ministarstva turizma da od visokih cijena koje su nerealne u ovoj situaciji nitko nema koristi. No, nema baš sluha u ‘jakim’ parkovima da redefiniraju stavove i ponude prihvatljivije cijene pa će se oko toga još razgovarati s Ministarstvom zaštite okoliša. If the favorable epidemiological situation continues, Croatia could achieve better results than estimated, and tourist traffic in the crucial summer part of the season will depend on whether and what measures are needed to preserve jobs and recover tourism. In conclusion, everyone agreed that everyone together must be responsible and communicate well and be coordinated within the entire tourism sector and beyond. Tourist traffic has been launched, borders are open, and the next steps are to explain to everyone the conditions of entry and stay in the Republic of Croatia and we must all work together to survive this year, which will not be easy for anyone. “Ministarstvo turizma je u HBOR kredite usmjerilo 600 milijuna kuna, a kako je stiglo jako puno zahtjeva taj iznos je premašen, jer su mislili kreditirati na tri godine, a ljudi su tražili tri plus dvije i sada moramo vidjeti kako to pojačati”, Pende said, adding that the problem is that people have not yet received the money, and the one-month procedure is too long. The situation is similar with Hamag Bicro loans, through which HRK 26 million was redirected and placed on the market. “In any case, we must find new funds for the needs of the market and for those who may be late with the call and for those who were not initially included in these programs such as car rentals, health tourism, clinics. We need new allocations and new funds to reschedule loans as much as possible in order to obtain funds as soon as possible.”, Pende said, adding that he is sure that a significant part of the announced 10 billion euros, which the European Commission has yet to confirm to repair the damage to the economy caused by the coronavirus, will be directed to tourism. Žgomba, on the other hand, announced that it had been agreed with the leasing companies to make a joint document and to go on a moratorium for up to 12 months. Odgovarajući na pitanja o Cro kartici i nedoumicama oko nje, Pende je rekao kako se po zadnjim informacijama u to uključilo sedam banaka te je naručeno prvih 40 tisuća kartica za početak srpnja te vjeruje da će se s tim krenuti. “To je dugoročni projekt, u koji će se s vremenom uključivati više pružatelja usluga i bit će za više ‘vrsta’ zaposlenika, po novom uključujući i državne i javne službenike, a očekuje se da će u tome biti i privatni smještaj, što sada nije jer nemaju pos terminale za plaćanje karticama“, rekao je. Staničić se pak nadovezao rekavši kako će HTZ, uz već aktivne kampanje za strana, pokrenuti kampanju i za domaće tržište, a kada Ministarstvo odluči i za promociju Cro kartice, za što smo su sredstva osigurana.  The current situation in tourism is much better than it was just a week or two ago. More than 40 guests are currently vacationing in Croatia, of which 12 are locals, and in addition we have 90 applications from foreigners who just want to come. Cro card planned for early July Pende je najavio da će idućeg tjedna na Vladi biti odluka da se u CRO kraticu uključe i usluge putničkih agencija te charter tvrtki (najam plovila), a razmišlja se i o online agencijama. No, najvažnije je da svi uključeni osiguraju popuste za domaće turiste. Photo Poreč Port Authority A number of questions related to CES measures for preserving jobs and benefits for June (4.000 kuna) and whether there will be extensions of that measure, and Pende says that this will be better known at the end of the summer, as well as for some other measures. “As for the situation at the borders, they are open with most EU countries, which is ultimately our strongest emitting market, and for those countries where there are still restrictions. “, Pende stressed, adding that he would seek liberalization of the measures. “We expect this situation to be resolved in a week in order to start a more serious tourist season. “, he said, noting that citizens from third countries can enter the Republic of Croatia provided that they have a confirmation of booking accommodation and after filling out the entire form through the application that speeds up the border crossing process for all foreign citizens.  Problematika turističkog prijevoza autobusima također muči agencije, ali Pende, koji je i član stožera za civilnu zaštitu, najavljuje kako će inicirati temu preporuka i mjera za turistički prijevoz autobusima, jer preporuke nisu jasne, a već dolaze i strani autobusi. Dodao je i kako se za koji dan mogu očekivati i preporuke HZJZ-a za kruzersku industriju i još neke neobrađene segmente turizma.  Stanicic also believes that the resumption of air traffic will help Croatian tourism and destinations, especially Dubrovnik, which is quite dependent on air arrivals of tourists, but also Split to be more accessible. Stanicic explained that the application is not a condition and mandatory, but guests will wait less at the borders. “When everything is completed, when reading the passport, everything is seen that was entered through the application, and the customs officer can ask for proof of reservation. The application is also adapted for tourist groups, but regardless of that, each passenger in the group must be registered, but there can only be one contact person. Despite the pandemic, Croatia has additionally positioned itself as a safe and desirable tourist destination due to the excellent epidemiological situation on the international market. “, said Staničić, adding that in recent years Croatia has positioned itself as an air destination, which is now especially important when we have to fight for our share in the tourist market with our offer, safety, but also traffic accessibility, so most flights are announced for the second half of June. and the beginning of July for the airports of Split and Dubrovnik and Zadar, Pula, Zagreb and Rijeka. These are the conclusions of yesterday online conference of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce “Travel agencies and coronavirus: yesterday, today, tomorrow?” koju je moderirao predsjednik Udruženja putničkih agencija HGK Boris Žgomba, koji je, zajedno s pomoćnikom ministra turizma i člana Stožera civilne zaštite Robertom Pendeom  i direktorom Glavnog ureda Hrvatske turističke zajednice Kristjanom Staničićem, sudjelovao i u panel raspravi. last_img read more

  • Dubrovnik wants to attract digital nomads

    first_img“Some of the main motives for digital nomads to come to Croatia is the desire to explore and create experiences of Europe, the beauty of nature and the sea in Croatia. For digital nomads, Croatia is an ideal opportunity to connect with other people in some way, to explore the beauties of a certain destination. The most important aspects of everyday work for digital nomads are the ability to access the Internet, a comfortable place to work and live, in general the atmosphere of the community and the environment in which they live is very important to nomads, the possibilities of various activities that interest them”, Said Tanja Polegubic, emphasizing that digital nomads show great interest in many cities in Croatia, especially in Dubrovnik, Split, Zagreb and the islands. Find out more about the conference, the program and the list of lecturers HERE. “The whole story is on the trail of our strategy of directing activities towards different markets with different interests. Dubrovnik has the potential to become a prestigious destination in this regard. This is a project that needs to be recognized by the entire local community, and it seems to me that it sees potential. Already during the preparations for this conference, I received positive feedback from the community. “, said the director Hrnić and emphasized that digital nomads are mostly financially well-off people, who stay longer in the destination and spend significant funds in it. With their activities and way of life, they would be ambassadors of Dubrovnik and influencers who would spread the image of Dubrovnik all over the world. The director of the Dubrovnik Tourist Board, Ana Hrnić, explained that the Tourist Board recognized the importance of the project in time, which, as she said, strengthens the position of the year-round destination. “Global tourism has experienced a turnaround, many destinations will certainly go in other directions, and it is no longer mass tourism but target groups and other forms of tourism. It is tourism that respects the quality of life. One of our directions there are digital nomads. Croatia has recognized the potential and is introducing visas that will make it easier for nomads to come and stay in the Republic of Croatia”, Said on this occasion the Mayor of Dubrovnik Mato Franković. Thus, Dubrovnik is the first city in Croatia to turn to digital nomads, and the organization of this conference provides an opportunity to present itself to this audience in light of the announced introduction of visas for digital nomads in Croatia. In addition to a comfortable living space, one of the basic prerequisites for the arrival of digital nomads in a destination is the appropriate infrastructure. ”The City of Dubrovnik has signed a contract with the Government of the Republic of Croatia worth 90 million kuna in order to strengthen the Internet in the entire City. I believe there are many benefits to working to get as many digital nomads as possible to our City”, Said also the mayor Franković. The organizer of the announced conference, the founder of the company “Saltwater”, Tanja Polegubic thanked the City of Dubrovnik for accepting the initiative and enabling the holding of this conference, which is a great opportunity for the local community to meet digital nomads. As part of the European Freelance Week (# EFWEEK2020), the Dubrovnik International Conference for Digital Nomads will be held in Lazareti from 16 to 25 October. These are business people who mostly come from the USA and the UK, and in a certain destination they mostly stay for a week, a month or even up to 3 months, while for some it becomes a permanent home. The process of making Croatia the second country in Europe (after Estonia) and the fifth in the world to introduce this type of visa is planned to be completed in early 2021. last_img read more