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					                                                                              Annex 4

                               TOURISM




І. STATUS OF THE SECTOR IN 2002

1. Economic Significance:
      - Over USD 1.3 billion of revenue;
      - Over 3 million foreign tourists;
      - The stake of international tourism was estimated at 10 pct of GDP in 2002,
        and with the domestic tourism added it exceeded 15 pct of GDP;

2. Social Significance:
Experts reports based on the European Union research for Bulgaria /PHARE
Programme, 1994/ state that:
      - The number of people directly employed in the tourism sector exceeded
          130,000 in 2002;
      - Tourism created over 240,000 new jobs in other sectors, such like
          agriculture, transport, construction, etc.

3. Status of facilities:
According to official data /the National Statistical Institute, the Ministry of
Economy/, in 2001:
       - The capacity of the tourism facilities base amounted to 110,000 beds in the
          480 accommodation facilities officially categorised by the Ministry of
          Economy;
       - Over 53 pct of the facilities belong in the middle and high category - three,
          four and five stars;
       - In addition to this volume, there is further supply provided by rest homes,
          individual houses and villas, the so-called “private lodgings” and other
          accommodation facilities which are categorised by the municipal
          authorities.

In the recent years, tourism has been the sector most attractive to investors:
       - The prevailing part of the investment has been directed to reconstruction,
          enhancement and category upgrade of the facilities (over 70 pct of the old
          facilities have been renovated);
     - The most active investors have been Bulgarian companies and the
       prevailing part of the funding have been attracted: for instance, the three
       major German tour operators granted loans amounting to some 200 million
       Euro to Bulgarian private companies;
     - The amount of FDI was insufficient: according to the Bulgarian Foreign
       Investment Agency (BFIA), they totaled USD 188.8 million in 1992-2001.



ІІ. ACTIVITY IN 2002

1. New Tourism Law was adopted along with seven by-laws regulating the
enforcement thereof

  The new legislation is aimed at:
   Decentralising the management of the tourism sector by way of expanding the
    rights and responsibilities of the regional and local authority bodies;
   Involving the branch associations in the management of the sector by way of
    establishing a new state-cum-public body, the National Tourism Council, along
    with similar councils active on regional and local level in which up to 50 pct of
    the participants shall be branch and business associations;
   Restructuring the national promotion system and establishing a specialised
    authority, the Executive Agency for National Tourism Advertising and Information
     (or National Tourism Promotion and Information Agency – NTPA);
   Upgrading the quality requirements related to tourism activities subject to
    licensing and categorisation under the new Tourism Law, and introducing the
    Directive 90/314 of the EU.

2. The joint effort of the specialised service forces, the regional and local
authorities allowed the tourism seasons to run normally and by end-2002, the
sector generated 8.6-pct-increase and the revenue for the period January-
November rose by 9.9 pct year-on-year.

3. Vigorous International Activity
          The First and Second International Tourism Conferences “Bulgaria –
            Dream Area” were staged;
          The First International Forum “Ecological Tourism, Mountains and
            Protected Areas” was staged and held, jointly with the Ministry of
            Environment and Water and Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry;
          Bulgaria participated in the First European Tourism Forum;
          Bulgaria participated in specialized international tourism shows and
            exchanges, with five national stands and 40 informational stands.



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ІІІ. TASKS SCHEDULED FOR 2003

  1. Further Upgrade of Quality in Tourism
     - Enforcement in practice of the Decree of the Council of Ministers No222
       for the adoption of the Regulation on the Categorisation of Tourism
       Facilities
     - Enforcement in practice of the Decree of the Council of Ministers No223
       for the adoption of the Regulation on the Licensing of Tour Operators and
       Tour Agents Activity;
     - Development and enforcement in the tourism sector of the requirements of
       ISO 9000 complied with the specifics of the tourism operations.

  2. Planning and Organisation of the Tourism Industry Sector
     - Elaboration of a strategy for the development of the sector until 2007 and
        adoption thereof by the National Tourism Council;
     - Elaboration and discussion of a strategy for the development of the
        specialised types of tourism: ecological, cultural & historical, rural;
     - Review of the status of the workforce currently available and elaboration –
        together with the Ministry of Education and Science, and the Ministry of
        Culture, - of unified criteria for the qualification upgrade of personnel in the
        tourism facilities;
     - Review and implementation of a Unified Tourism Information System (UTIS)
        in Bulgaria, including a Unified Tourism Register;
     - Review, development and implementation of a National Reservation
       System (National Booking System);
     - Elaboration and adoption – by the Executive Agency for National Tourism
        Advertising and Information – of a unified marketing programme for
        improvement of Bulgaria’s image as a tourism destination;
     - Encouragement of the restructuring of the branch organisations in the
       tourism industry and establishment of an operating Chamber of Tourism as
       a basis for further decentralisation of the management of the tourism sector.


  3. Legislative Activity:
     - Law on prostitution;
     - Amendments to the Methodics for Defining the Amount of Concession Fee
       for Sea Beaches subject to concessions, and development of Methodics for
       Granting Concessions for the Usage of Mineral Waters;
     - Improvement of the visa regime and the Foreigners Act.




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