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Tourism passports expected to boost tourism competitiveness

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Tourism competitiveness will be bolstered with tourist passports guaranteeing the quality of qualifications of tourism workers, safety and service standards.

A debate over the tourist passport is under way within the EU after being proposed by the Association of Employers of Slovenia. Macedonia’s Business Confederation of Employers, which took part in the preparation of the criteria for standards, expects the new document to be put into operation next year.

“The document will be used voluntarily if it is determined that the tourist passport can boost quality, reputation and the way in which services are provided. The document is not obligatory, it only provides an additional quality,” stated Mile Boskov, president of the Business Confederation of Macedonia, which is organizing Thursday in Skopje a workshop on better social dialogue in tourism.

According to Boskov, it is necessary to put an emphasis on the quality of people working in tourism and on standards aimed at improving services. “The tourist passport offers a guarantee for a quality and content worker, who is well-trained in order to meet the needs of the client, consumer, i.e. tourist. It’s not enough to offer only good infrastructure and natural beauties, it is also necessary to offer quality,” Boskov stated emphasizing that Macedonia had the potential to develop the sector of tourism, which was employing 45,000 people directly or indirectly.

According to Anze Hirshl, representative of the Association of Employers of Slovenia, tourism is also a very important branch in Macedonia, which is being improved constantly. Social dialogue will also contribute to establishing stable circumstances in this branch, he said.

To improve social dialogue at national and European level, the capacities of social partners will be strengthened through the Tourism is People project. Its main objective is to modernize the labour market, skills and qualifications, work quality, safety and security of the workplace and a decent job.

The project, implemented since February in Ljubljana, brings together employers’ associations from Macedonia, Croatia, Montenegro and Serbia