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Italy Tourism Ministry finally back says BMT President

The open-air and in-person version of the Mediterranean Tourism Exchange BMT in Naples, is so far the only travel mart that was open to the public in Italy in 2021.

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  1. The results of the Mediterranean Tourism Exchange held from June 18 to 20, 2021, were as expected with regard to exhibitors and mostly professionals attending from the public.
  2. The Tourism Minister praised the President of BMT for spearheading this important initiative.
  3. Minister Garavaglia promised to present legislation to the government for tax relief for tourism associations as well as seasonal tourism workers.

Tourism Minister Massimo Garavaglia was present at the BMT inauguration and praised the promoter of the event and President of BMT, Angel de Negri, for the courage to make the important initiative possible. The minister reassured of the possibility of slow recovery thanks also to the vaccination plan.  He also extended a guarantee on tax relief for staff hiring of tour operators initially for the year 2021 with an extension commitment of up to 3 years.

In response to requests made to the Italy Ministry of Tourism for financial support from tourism associations, Garavaglia, having found out the criticality of the problem, undertook a concrete commitment is needed to extend the tax relief already provided for in other occupational fields and for it to apply also to seasonal tourism workers. He promised to present to the government an amendment and to ensure its activation as soon as possible. The intent would be to provide tax relief which will be useful for encouraging more attractive recruitment and salary treatments, “at least competitive with citizenship income.”

Minister Garavaglia added: “Istat [the Italian National Institute of Statistics] expects GDP growth in September to increase +4.7 percent, and it is the tourism operators who make GDP. We in the government must help them. We have to open the flows, because it allows us to have customers. Now with the green pass, we have clear rules and in addition to Schengen, the United States, Canada, Israel are included. In the meantime, we must begin to extend the tourist season in time and space. Then there is the great bet of recovery: 2.4 billion which becomes 5 with the leverage effect.”

Comments of the associations

Pier Ezhaya, President of ASTOI (the trade Association of Tour Operators) and Franco Gattinoni of FTO (Federation of Organized Tourism) both indicate the good trend of the demand for domestic tourism and asks the government to support the trend and open tourist corridors to allow customers to travel wherever they wish. They said now they can operate in Italy, Greece, and Spain, but this is only 15 percent of the turnover of organized tourism, and the incoming-outgoing activity with foreign markets is necessary.

In closing, BMT President de Negri said: “This is not a traditional fair, but a family reunion, which will go down in history. I have great faith in the Ministry of Tourism. Without it, our sector has no future. The invitation is to believe in a ministry that has finally returned.”


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