Published on : Tuesday, June 11, 2019
In the European Union, tourism is a key socio-economic activity. It contributes to financial growth, creates and sustains millions of jobs and is a positive force of cultural interaction among peoples. Nevertheless, like any important activity, it also has an effect on the environment because of improved transport and a tough footprint in urban areas distinguished by over-tourism. These problems Malta is facing in particular and which will turn out to be even more acute in the coming years.
The tourism drives several business activities, like hospitality, catering, agriculture, heritage, transport, technology and professional services, among others. As tourism policy is mainly the proficiency of Member States, the EU also has a key responsibility in paving the way for tourism to thrive. For example it played a significant part in the past with the Schengen project, which is the cornerstone allowing freedom of movement of people across many EU Member States that profits tourism as well; and credit goes to the EU visa code that set up common procedures for third country nationals to visit any EU country.
Also, EU legislation governs different areas affecting the daily operations of different business activities associated with tourism, like health and safety rules and standards in buildings that hotels and restaurants are required to stand for with; and the quality of food and beverage products that farmers, food processers and caterers need to follow diligently.