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Grapini will go on building the construction sites started by Udrea if they are 80 pc complete and if it costs more to shut them down.
Tens of millions of Euros were spent in recent years in tourism without this having beneficial effects for the industry, EUR 12 M being already paid for the promotion of Romania’s tourism brand, Maria Grapini (photo), delegated minister for SMEs, Tourism and Business Environment, stated for Mediafax. “I’m only saying this for the public, for it to analyze, is it good that we built 147 ski slopes, which total 125 kilometers, but that are spread out?” Grapini asked. She stated that in Austria the ski slopes are grouped together with the entire necessary infrastructure. Grapini added that dozens of millions of Euros were thus spent “without effects.” She also underlined, in a reply to Elena Udrea’s reaction, who stated that it would be a performance for Grapini to continue what she started, that the construction sites will be continued if they are 80 per cent completed and if it costs more for them to be shut down. “Unfortunately, this year’s budget has to be allocated to paying the bills unpaid in recent years,” Grapini stated on Saturday in a communiqué. She added that it will be difficult to continue what Udrea started considering the hundreds of lawsuit she inherited and for which billions of RON are being paid. The minister added that she wants Romania no longer being the last country in Europe when it comes to tourism, to stop spending “irrationally” and for there to no longer be a competition over who absorbs more European funds in order to obtain the President’s praise but without real effects. At the same time, Maria Grapini is dissatisfied with the collaboration with ANAT, which issued on Wednesday a press communiqué asking for the decentralization of the process of issuing permits for tourism operators, without presenting the proposal to the ministry during a recent meeting. “As a person that led an employers’ association at national level for 16 years I never took the liberty of working with the ministries through press communiqués,” Grapini added.On the other hand, Constanta Mayor Radu Mazare agrees with the initiative that ANAT and the Federation of Tourism Promotion Associations in Romania have had for tourism operators to be issued their permits at local level. Asked what will happen with the people of Constanta that house tourists during the summer season without stating their resulting incomes, Mazare stated that he will tolerate that because it is a source of income for the inhabitants of the city.
Japanese tourists to Romania?
Delegated minister for SMEs, Tourism and Business Environment Maria Grapini also pointed out that she plans to attract Asian tourists to Romania, especially tourists from Japan where she will reopen the tourism promotion office closed down several years ago. “We have to aim for countries with solid economies too,” Grapini stated. China can be a place where Romania can have an office and can efficiently promote tourism, the minister added. Grapini also stated that she is analyzing the activity of tourism offices, asking them for their 2012 reports. The offices’ running costs, events organized and the events’ effect will be analyzed. At the same time, Grapini considers that Romania should be promoted throughout the world with the help of several domains in which she is unique, such as the Danube Delta, her hot springs and her legends, including the legend of Dracula, as many other countries are doing. Likewise, authentic Romanian products should be promoted at fairs organized at home and abroad, so that tourists will know what they can buy, the minister stated, expressing her belief that many souvenir shops in Romania are selling only kitsch products.