On June 21, 2022, ADVANTAGE AUSTRIA Romania and the AUSTRIAN EMBASSY in Romania, in cooperation with AER – Romanian Association of Ecotourism, organized the conference “The Future of Ecotourism | Romania 2022” in Zăbala, Covasna County. The event is part of the global business outreach ReFocus Austria, which is a key component of the Austrian federal government‘s economic comeback plan during and after the Covid-19 pandemic.
The venue of the conference was the picturesque and eco-oriented Zabola Estate, where some of the most important Romanian and Austrian stakeholders of the private, public, and academic sectors were invited. The aim was to highlight the potential of ecotourism in Romania, to provide Austrian know-how and expertise to interested parties, to start a conversation on necessary measures and possible tools for ecotourism, and finally, to promote ecotourism in Romania and internationally.
The event was inaugurated by Gerd Bommer, Head of ADVANTAGE AUSTRIA Romania, HE Adelheid Folie, Ambassador of Austria to Romania, HE Emil Hurezeanu, Ambassador of Romania to Austria, and State Secretary Florin-Sergiu Dobrescu of the Romanian Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Tourism.
Keynote speeches from top ecotourism experts like Professor Christian Baumgartner and Alois Lang (Austria), or Andrei Blumer and Bogdan Papuc (Romania) set the atmosphere for the day, laying ground for the very interesting discussions which followed. Special topics like Destination Management Organizations, collaboration, as well as tourism marketing & branding, were discussed in five high-quality panels.
Among top-notch speakers who followed ADVANTAGE AUSTRIA Romania’s invitation to discuss the future of ecotourism in Romania were Dragoș Anastasiu and Călin Ile, experts in the travel and tourism fields, and promotors of several initiatives to positively impact Romania in the years to come.
Special guest of the day was Charlie Ottley, writer and presenter of the renowned travel series “Flavours of Romania” and “Wild Carpathia”, who passionately shared his experience and personal views of the future of nature tourism in Romania with the numerous professional audience.
Please also see our flickr-gallery for more impressions of the event.