Podcetrtek, 27 May (STA) - The positive trend in Slovenia's tourism sector in the first months of 2011 was in the centre of focus at the launch of the 14th annual Slovenian Incoming Workshop (SIW), a market-type event presenting Slovenian tourism destinations and services to potential foreign partners.
Acting director general of the Tourism Directorate at the Economy Ministry Marjan Hribar said in Terme Olimija on Friday that combined effects of tourism generated some 12% of Slovenia's GDP. Apart from generating new jobs, it also contributed to a balanced regional development.
Hribar said that after a very negative 2010, all indicators turned up in 2011. Revenues generated in the first quarter of 2011 were up 7.5% compared to the same period last year. The number of guests was up 5%, while overnight stays increased by 3%.
"In Slovenia's balance of payments, the sector represents a solid 40% of exports of services," said Hribar.
He added that Slovenia's tourism sector placed 10th on the competitiveness rankings of the International Institute for Management Development (IMD), while Slovenia's economy in general was 51st among 59 countries rated.
In the years that are not the easiest for Slovenia's economy, tourism and its synergistic effects are even more important for the economy, said Hribar.
Maja Pak, the director of the Slovenian Tourism Board (STO), said the biggest increase in the number of tourists in the first four months of 2011 was recorded at the Slovenian seaside, where it was up 30%. In Ljubljana and other cities, the figure was up 10%.
Like every year, the SIW features Slovenia's entire tourism sector. This central tourism event of the year provides an opportunity to promote Slovenia's tourist destinations and services.
This year, the event that will run until Sunday, brings together 384 representatives from 268 companies, half of them from abroad.