Challenges and opportunities facing tourism in Europe at the ECR conference in Ischia

Culture - June 29, 2023

The fourth ECR Party event of the European Culture Weekend took place in Ischia, Italy on June 23-25. The location chosen by the organisers was an inspiring one, one of the most popular destinations among tourists visiting Italy. The conference participants were deeply impressed by the Mediterranean landscape and all that the island has to offer, just 30 kilometres from Naples.

Although each country is special in its own way and would have something to offer its visitors, some destinations are more popular than others. Every year, millions of tourists go on holiday in search of new adventures, beautiful landscapes, entertainment, romance or unique experiences. According to the World Tourism Organisation, France is the world’s most visited country, with 84.5 million visitors a year. The top three are the USA (77.5 million visitors a year) and Spain (68.2 million visitors a year). This top is completed by China (56.9 million annual visitors) and Italy (50.7 million annual visitors). What is the relevance of this top 2022 for the European tourism industry? It is a relevant fact that in the top 5 countries of the planet, the European continent holds 3 countries in the top 5 countries of the world regarding holiday preferences. This implies responsibility and support from governments and implicitly from the European Commission for the tourism industry on the old continent. This is why the ECR Party has decided to debate the topic “Tourism: a development engine for Europe”, the key role of tourism in the European economy, during the conference in Ischia.

The challenges and opportunities currently facing Europe from a regulatory perspective as well as the collaboration that should exist in the field of tourism and transport were analysed and discussed during the fourth European Culture Weekend event organised by the ECR Party.

On Friday, the participants of the event were warmly welcomed by the organizers, and the evening was marked by a welcome cocktail in the extraordinary location offered by Hotel Continental in Ischia (one of the most famous and luxurious hotels on the island) where those present could enjoy traditional Italian food, taste Italian wines and socialize with special guests.

On Saturday morning, the European Conservative Conference took place with the main topic on the agenda: “Tourism: a development engine for Europe”

The themes of the conference were divided into four different panels:

“Tourism and Culture: business perspective and conservative strategies”.

“Mobility in tourism: the aviation system as a strength,”

“European tourism system: how much influence can the European Commission have?”

“Religious tourism in Europe: itineraries to discover our identity”.

The debates were attended by leading figures in European political life, as well as decision-makers from the transport and tourism sectors and specialists from the tourism industry.

Among the personalities who share conservative ideas and who honoured with their presence the ECR Party initiative to participate in the conference were:

Daniela Santanchè , Nicola Procaccini, Gianluca Caramanna,  Carlo Fidanza (MEP European Parliament),  Antonio Giordano , Tommaso Foti,  Ladislav Ilci, Donatella Di Nitto,  Michele Schiano,  Federico Mollicone, Fabio Roscani,  Galeazzo Bignami.

Alongside those listed at the event were also present notable personalities from the economic tourism sector and political leaders of the great conservative family united under the ECR umbrella: Marina Lalli,  Domenico Lombardi, Eddie Wilson, Alessandra Priante,  Pasqualino Monti, Fabio Lazzerini, Gregory Alegi,  Barbara Arbitrio, Barbara Kolm,  Adela Mirza, Giancarla Rondinelli, Veronica Pamio and  Tommaso Tanzilli,

Following the debates, new strategies for a comprehensive tourism system were outlined and laid the foundations for enhancing all European regions with the aim of restoring Europe’s position as a crossroads of global tourism, so that Europeans are encouraged to rediscover the true Europe, made up of ancient cultures and traditions that form the roots of the conservative European identity.

Sunday offered guests the opportunity to visit Ischia Island and the La Mortella Gardens, which annually attracts over 70,000 visitors from all over the world.