Venice declaration, Brussels 21 November 2003



The Italian Presidency of the European Union, in cooperation with the European Commission, organized the European Tourism Forum 2003, under the joint chairmanship of the Minister for Productive Activities, Mr. Antonio Marzano, and the European Commissioner, Mr. Erkki Liikanen.

The Forum was held on the 28th and 29th of November in Abano Terme and Venice. The main topics under discussion included taxation, impact assessment of measures concerning the tourism sector and the joint promotion of European tourist destinations.

Considering the outcome of the proceedings and the reports of the two parallel workshops, and with a view to improving the impact of EU policies on tourism, the participants to the Forum agreed on the following points:

    • the need for coordinated action between the European Union and each one of the Member States, aimed at promoting the competitiveness of European tourism and the potential for job creation in the sector;
    • the need for an integrated and harmonious development of tourist business activities, through measures designed to enhance the access and mobility of tourists;
    • the need to expand the potential of the tourism sector whilst taking into account environmental and social sustainability requirements;
    • the need for common policies aimed at improving working conditions in the tourism sector and devising favourable training procedures;
    • the need for common actions aimed at promoting the image of European tourism outside Europe, both in traditional and emerging markets, in particular through the use of new technologies and the creation of a Portal of European Tourist Destinations.

The Venice Declaration stresses the significance of including Tourism in the future European Constitution, and has been drawn up on the basis of the communication on “Basic orientations for the sustainability of European tourism”, adopted by the Commission on the 21 st of November.

The present Declaration was approved by the participants to the Forum and will be sent to the Member States of the European Union, in particular to Ireland so that it may continue to promote actions in support of the tourism sector throughout the forthcoming semester of its Presidency. It is also made public so as to guarantee its dissemination.

Venice, 29 November 2003