The European Parliament proposes a budget line for tourism


The Tourism for Growth and Jobs Manifesto was created in 2015 by Europe’s tourism actors, ECF included, to address the lack of political support for tourism policy within the European Commission. Since then, it has quickly established itself as an important lobbying tool for the tourism sector with the European institutions. Its efforts were rewarded on the 14th of March by the European Parliament which agreed that the EU budget for 2020 to 2027 should include a specific budget line for tourism.

Europe is currently the world’s number one tourist destination with a market share of 51% in 2014. The tourism industry generates (directly and indirectly) 9.7% of total EU-28 GDP, a figure which is forecasted to rise to 10.4% by 2025.

In the EU, the travel and tourism sector employs almost 25 million people and visitor exports generate 351 billion EUR per year. The role of tourism becomes increasingly important considering that, by nature, it is a labour intensive sector built primarily by SMEs, and it has high female and youth employment ratios.

Tourism Manifesto

ECF and the 41 other signatory organisations welcome this initiative as the Manifesto calls for better and more effective tourism policies. A specific budget in the Multi Annual Financial Framework (MFF) will help create new jobs and growth, ensuring that the continent remains an attractive destination and that the sector continues to make a significant contribution to the EU economy.

The Tourism for Growth and Jobs Manifesto has already achieved concrete results: most notably with an increase in the European Commission’s budget for tourism in 2017 and a high level event on ‘A European strategy to enhance the competitiveness of the tourism industry’ held in the European Parliament in September 2017, which featured the President of the European Parliament and six Commissioners.

The ECF continues to play a leading role in the EU Tourism Manifesto Group with Adam Bodor, ECF Advocacy and EuroVelo Director, acting as Vice-Chair.The Tourism Manifesto’s emphasis on sustainable tourism, as promoted through the EuroVelo project, is crucial to the future competitiveness of the European Tourism market.

A specific budget for the tourism sector in the next MFF would be a great step forward in realizing the Manifesto’s aims and hopefully, it will ultimately lead to some practical advances for the tourism and cycling industry in Europe.

Please find the Tourism for Jobs and Growth Manifesto here.