HSU-President Jens Zimmer Christensen: A future-oriented hotel classification is a cornerstone for an internationally competitive European tourism destination

Delegates of the 17 member countries of the Hotelstars Union (HSU) met in Vienna to discuss the future challenges to ensure the successful continuation of the strategic partnership. The Managing Board particularly welcomed Georgia, France and Poland as potential new partners in the stars family. Each country confirmed its concrete interest in HSU membership, as the harmonised criteria are the future for a prosperous hotel industry.

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HOTREC, the European umbrella association of hotels, restaurants and cafés, welcomed today during its 76th General Assembly two new members: the Georgian Hotel, Restaurant and Cafe Federation (HOREKA) and the Association of HORECA employers in Poland (ZPHoReCa).


We warmly welcome these two leading hospitality associations from Georgia and Poland in the HOTREC family. These new memberships clearly demonstrate HOTREC’s success in representing and defending the hospitality industry’s interests across Europe. HOREKA and ZPHoReCa’s voices will further increase HOTREC’s effectiveness in all its activities” commented Ms. Susanne Kraus-Winkler, President of HOTREC.

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Šī gada 17. aprīlī, Latvijas Viesnīcu un restorānu asociācijas (LVRA) izpilddirektore S. Graikste piedalījās nacionālās aviokompānijas “AirBaltic” pārstāvju Kazahstānā, Uzbekistānā un Kirgizstānā “APG” organizētajā seminārā, sniedzot prezentāciju par atpūtas iespējām Latvijā.

Seminārs notika Kazahstānas galvaspilsētā Almati un tajā piedalījās vismaz 40 vadošie tūrisma aģenti un operatori.

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Baltkrievijas lielākā starptautiskā tūrisma izstāde “Otdih 2018” valsts galvaspilsētā Minskā norisinājās no 4. aprīļa līdz 8. aprīlim.

Latvijas nacionālajā stendā, kuru organizē LIAA Tūrisma departaments, strādā pārstāvji no Kurzemes tūrisma asociācijas, Latgales tūrisma asociācijas “Ezerzeme", Liepājas pilsētas pašvaldības administrācijas, Latvijas Viesnīcu un restorānu asociācijas, Daugavpils Marka Rotko mākslas centra, SIA “Latvia Tours”, SIA “AFY TRAVEL” un SIA “Averoja”.

Brussels, 26 March 2018 – HOTREC, the European umbrella association of hotels, restaurants and cafés urges policy makers and especially online platforms to assume their liabilities towards consumers and society regarding so-called ‘collaborative’ economy activities. While the European Commission and the UK, during the past days, set clear signs that platforms have to take their responsibilities, the Spanish competition authority still shows unaccountable tendency towards liberating such platforms from their liabilities.

The UK ‘All Party Parliamentary Group for Tourism’ issued its interim report on 22 March, highlighting the urgent need for better enforcement of legislation and the creation for a level playing field between the rapidly emerging activities of short term rental of properties and the regulated tourist accommodation provision. The report stresses that despite in many occasions activities are comparable, collaborative type of activities are exposing society to higher risks when it comes e.g. to safety or fiscal compliance. The text calls for platforms to accept their responsibilities.

On the opposite, on the same day, the Madrid National Commission on Markets and Competition (CNMC) appealed a new Spanish law which is obliging online platforms to closer cooperate with authorities when it comes to compliance with fiscal obligations.

Still on taxation, on 21 March the European Commission made a right step towards more balanced competition, when proposing legislation to have online platforms paying their taxes where they create value, independently whether they have physical presence in the country or not.

“More and more politicians recognise the need to step up against the current unfair market conditions on the ‘collaborative’ economy related markets, which affect both consumers and society. Registration of the activities, direct tax collection by online platforms based on the individuals’ activities are becoming standard procedures in several countries around Europe” – said Christian de Barrin, CEO of HOTREC.

“It is time to stop overprotecting both unregulated business activities as well as giant online platforms facilitating such activities. They are integral part of the European economy and should be treated accordingly both regarding compliance with basic sector specific regulations as well as fiscal obligations applicable to all economic players” – concluded Ramon Estalella, Chair of HOTREC’s ‘Collaborative’ Economy Task Force.

HOTREC will support all European Commission initiatives in this direction and encourages all Member States and regional/local authorities to move ahead on this path creating fairness and reassurance for consumers across Europe.