19 June 2019 - The Tourism Council concluded that the tourist indicators in the first quarter of this year significantly exceeded the data from the record 2018, which, alongside the fact that the activities on the preparation of this year's peak season are implemented or being implemented in accordance with the plan, indicates that 2019 will be a very successful tourist year, reported the Government of Montenegro.
In the first three months of 2019, 166,628 tourists visited Montenegro, which is 38.15% more than in the same period of 2018, while 645,630 tourist nights were registered, 22.4% more than in the same period of the previous year. Tourist traffic data recorded by local tourism organisations show an increase of an average of 15.33% in the first 23 weeks of this year (from January to 14 June inclusive) compared to the same period of 2018.
"These data are even more important if you are aware that in the last year, in which Montenegrin tourism broke all records, the number of tourists increased by 10.24 percent compared to 2017, and the number of overnight stays by 8.17%," stated in the Report on the implementation of the activities envisaged by the Plan for the preparation of the 2019 summer tourist season, which the Council discussed.
The increase in the number of tourists and the number of nights is followed by the growth of revenues - in 2018, by 8.59% more than in 2017, and in the first quarter of this year, revenues increased by 7.9% compared to the record year 2018 when Montenegro exceeded one billion EUR in tourism revenues for the first.
Significant increase in the number of tourists in collective accommodation was recorded from the market of Germany (the number of arrivals for the first four months was five times higher than in the same period last year); doubled tourist traffic was recorded from the markets of Austria, the United Kingdom (32.25%), France (an increase of 11.23%) and Poland (an increase of 10.24%).
The Council noted that such good tourist trends are primarily the result of improving the quality of accommodation capacities and the development of new tourist facilities and offers. About 70 four-star and five-star hotels were opened during the mandate of this Government, while about 30 projects related to product development were supported in last year alone. Air transport accessibility has been improved and a number of activities have been implemented to promote the tourist offer by the National Tourism Organisation and the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism.
Council President Duško Marković emphasised that the impressive growth of tourism as a leading economy, by its scope and financial effects, has again positioned Montenegro as a top tourist destination.
Despite the significant improvements that are evident from year to year, the Council pointed to constraints that exist when it comes to occasional traffic jams, the permeability of borders, execution of construction works during the season, improvement of utility services. It was noted that the constraints need to be addressed through additional coordination of the state authorities responsible for these issues and institutions at the local level. Furthermore, the Council stressed the need for additional engagement when it comes to employing foreigners and defining systemic solutions related to the education and training of lacking staff in the tourism sector. In order to effectively monitor the development of the tourist season and undertake measures to overcome the challenges, especially during the upcoming peak tourist season, the Council established a Coordinating Body for the season monitoring headed by Minister of Sustainable Development and Tourism Pavle Radulović.
Read more news about travel in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
15 June 2019 - The Summit of finance ministers, governors and directors of the tax administration of the region, organized by the Belgrade’s weekly news magazine NIN, was held recently in Bečići and it included a panel of directors of tax administration devoted to the reform of tax administration and fight against the grey economy.
Director of Montenegro’s Tax Administration, Mr Miomir M. Mugoša, in his introductory speech, emphasized that the Government of Montenegro invested significant funds in the project ‘Reform of tax administration’ having in mind the importance of this institution in the system of public finances. On this occasion, he also noted that he expects that this project will contribute to the reduction of administrative burden and somewhat greater compliance with tax regulations, that is, reduction in the overall tax gap.
“Mugoša presented the activities implemented so far, within the overall reform of taxes in Montenegro, including modernization of business processes, investment in information technologies, greater autonomy and reorganization, all with the aim of establishing a modern tax administration capable of responding to market’s requirements and ensuring high levels of public revenue collection,“ it was said in a statement of the Montenegrin Tax Administration.
At the end of this summit, the panel members concluded that there was a need for even closer regional cooperation and not just in terms of sharing experience and knowledge but for the region to be able to establish a single approach in dealing with common challenges, such as the fight against the grey economy and tax evasion.
Source: Cafe del Montenegro
14 June 2019 - Twenty-five organizations and 150 participants from 30+ countries will gather in Budva, Montenegro at the Digital Influencers in Action Forum hosted by Digital Communication Network. At a two-day event, digital marketers, social influencers, analysts, entrepreneurs, journalists, and other professionals will have a chance to look at digital campaigns with social impact in a comprehensive way.
The first day will have 15 talks on various topics such as identifying and engaging influencers, amplifying the reach, influencers reputation and personal branding, monitoring campaigns’ impact and key metrics, fake influencers and negative influence, reaching audiences in a whole new way.
The second day will have interactive workshops, an unconference, a mini-fair of media literacy initiatives and projects, and a mini-hackathon when participants can develop concepts of campaigns involving digital influencers. Workshop topics will address four themes: 1) Building trust between media, governments, and digital influencers; 2) Influencers management; 3) Campaigns for Children and Youth; 4) Influencers in countering disinformation.
The unconference will give the audience an opportunity to briefly present, in connection to two broad topics: 1) Digital Influencers marketing for business; 2) Influencers campaigns for non-profits. At the mini-hackathon participants will be given an hour to come up with a concept of how to build a campaign involving digital influencers on a given topic: 1) Critical thinking 2) Inclusion and participation 3) Social entrepreneurship.
The interested organizations and initiatives will be able to present their campaigns in specially designed booths, increasing the level of interactivity and creative synergies.
In addition to different forms of discussion, Digital Communication Network plans to release its updated “Mapping Digital Influencers 2019” research covering 27 countries of Europe and Asia.
Key speakers include:
• Adam Harrell, NEBO Agency, USA
• Nazli Ozgur, influencer (230K+ followers), Turkey
• Emma Lacey-Bordeaux, CNN, USA
• Kamile Kaselyte, Co-Founder of KIKOINNE, Belgium
• Josh Druding, Director of Social Strategy | Epic Signal, USA
• Suveer Bajaj, Co-founder, FoxyMoron, India
• Bektour Iskender, Kloop, Kyrgyzstan
• Andjela Todorovic, Machine Learning Engineer at Createsi GmbH, Serbia
• Zain Velji, Partner + VP Strategy Northweather, Canada
• Irakli Porchkhidze, Vice President at Georgian Institute for Strategic Studies (GISS), Georgia
• Katarina Klingova, GLOBSEC, Slovakia
• Raluca Radu, Digital Marketing Strategist for #eCommerce, Romania
• Nikolai Taylor, Podcaster on @ChocolatePains, Founder & CEO of Viral Spark, USA
• Žiga Vrtačič, General Manager, Danes je Nov Dan, Ljubljana, Slovenia
• Veronica Bielik, Spotlight Agency, Poland
• Iliada Evangelia Kothra, Founder of living-postcards, Business Consultant, Greece
The Forum is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State Office of Citizen Exchanges and coordinated by Digital Communication Network, an international association, connecting global influencers and communicators of the digital age and World Learning, a global NGO empowering people and strengthening institutions.
The registration form for the event for local participants can be submitted at the website: https://forms.gle/4N5NCm8eMSwhEmD27
Read more about events in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
13 June 2019 - Bad weather conditions in the pre-season did not affect the number of tourists visiting Bar. Director of Tourist Organization, Mr Emil Kukalj, says that although the number of visitors at one moment was lower than last year, after the weather conditions improved, there was even an increase in the number of tourists.
“We should work on developing a tourist product that will not be affected by weather conditions. By that I mean, development of cultural tourism and tourism based on concrete events," says Mr Kukalj.
Bar, as one of the most attractive tourist destinations, was presented in the neighboring countries and Western Europe. Feedback from the trade fairs visitors is positive. Visitors expressed the greatest interest in Bar during summer. However, a town under Rumija has the potential to change that.
“We tend to point out that this is a town on two coasts and National Park Skadar lake is one the pearls of the offer. We are trying to present Bar as destination suitable throughout the entire year,” says Mr Kukalj and believes that it’s achievable.
With the construction of several high-category hotels, Bar is slowly but surely becoming a destination that can respond to the demands of high-end visitors who are used to luxury. Director of TO stresses that appropriate infrastructure is a must.
“We are very happy to see that the municipality and the state invest in the development of infrastructure, roads, public utility infrastructure… The effect of the campaign “Our Bar- clean town” is very important too. The residents and tourists have to be aware that waste disposal at places designated for such purposes increases the quality of the offer and life of our citizens”, says Mr Kukalj.
Employees in the tourism sector are satisfied with the benefits that Bar has had from cruising in the last couple of years.
“Our partners, Port of Adria, Alegra Montenegro Agency, small local souvenir manufacturers welcoming the tourists from every cruiser play a major role,” points out Mr Kukalj.
This summer residents of Bar and visitors can expect a very diverse range of amenities and programs.
“Under the auspices of “Ljeto pod zvijezdama” we are going to organize shows of musicians from the region and local bands and performers. There will be concerts every Friday at the King Nikola promenade,” says Mr Kukalj.
Something new this summer – the City games – is an event that is going to take place on 28 June.
After the season, TO Bar is going to organize Grapes Festival in Virpazar.
Tourist-information desks are open in Virpazar, Čanj, Sutomore, Šušanj, Stari Bar, Topolica and soon in Utjeha and Ostros.
TO Bar has been working very hard on the promotion of the potentials of hinterland.
“Last month we organized the action “Pohod u planine” (Visit the mountains). It was a 50-kilometer long tour from the sea to the lake shore. It is just one segment of the offer, since Bar has 100 km of very interesting footpaths. They need to be maintained, tourist signalization should be installed… We expect support from the media, agencies, and local and state-level institutions,” says the Director of TO Bar.
Source: Cafe del Montenegro
11 June 2019 - This summer, tourists will have 139 beaches and bathing areas in Budva at their disposal of which 22 are hotel bathing areas, 88 intended as family bathing areas, 4 romantic, one party area, 8 excursion areas, 2 pet-friendly bathing areas and one location intended for dogs only.
There are also nine beaches with no equipment, two beaches for active rest, two nudist beaches and one beach as a children's resort.
Romantic areas in Budva are located on the Island of Saint Nikola, Malaya Beach, Reževići and Bršalj in Petrovac.
The party bathing area is located in Kamenovo, where the noise doesn’t affect the surrounding areas.
There are two excursion areas on the island of Saint Nikola, at Jaz beach, in Golubinj, Drobni Pijesak, Veizorovo ribarište and Crvena Stijena (Red Rock). They are accessible from the water only and are suitable for excursions and picnics.
The bathing areas for pets are Buljarica and Slovenska plaža, and there is also an area for dog-bathing, which is not designated as a bathing area.
Bathing areas without beach equipment are Saint Nikola, Slovenska plaža neat Park hotel, Bečići, Pržno on its east, Saint Stephen and part of the beach in Petrovac.
Two diving areas at the Jaz beach and Slovenska plaža are the areas for active rest.
Nudist beaches are Jaz – Žuta greda and Crvena Glavica, while the children resort is located in Bečići.
Source: Cafe del Montenegro
On Sunday, September 1st, popular London hitmakers Disciples and their biggest hit "How Deep Is Your Love" will perform to Sea Dance festival.
The song originally was written and recorded with the Norwegian singer Ina Wroldsen was liked so much by the famous producer Calvin Harris, he immediately offered to release it together, and the video featuring the astonishing supermodel Gigi Hadid now counts a dazzling 1.3 billion YouTube views with two BRIT nominations and an MTV award!
Their outstanding talent was first recognized by the legendary Pete Tong on whose publishing house they released a brilliant record "Catwalk", but shortly after their first big radio hit, "They Do Not Know", which the prestigious BBC Radio 1 released day and night. The enormous success has continued today, and the status of the hit stars has been cemented by the summer house hymns "On My Mind" and "Jealousy"! Glastonbury, Leeds, Creamfields, and EXIT are just some of the world's biggest festivals where they performed, and today they host the program in Ibiza, where they perform side by side with names such as their former mentors and today's partners, Calvin Harris and David Guetta, as well as another Sea Dance star - Sven Vath!
In addition to the British stars to the Sea Dance festival, there will also be the young German producer and DJ star Lovra, who drew the attention of the great names of the world's electronic music scene starting with David Guetta, Armand van Helden, Basement Jaxx and Felix da Housecat, with whom she performed worldwide. The young artist from Berlin has played 17 shows with David Guetta in Ibiza, as well as in the club Hi that has been inherited by the former Space. At the main stage of the festival will perform one of the most popular DJs and producers from the Balkans, Macedonian genius Galoski, who also enjoys the support of David Guetta, and other greats like Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Afrojack, Nicky Romero, Fedde Le Grande, and others. Under the alias Sand & Sense, he also released the single "Cold Night" which jumped out of the regional popularity and became one of the most listened-to songs on the famous BBC Radio 1.
DJ Wags will also perform, recognized by the energetic and unique performances that elevate the atmosphere to the flames and is considered to be one of the best house music performers. In his rich career and performances at numerous world stages, he enrolled five consecutive performances at the Ultra Festival. The talented Montenegrin duo Vill & Vash, who for a short time gained the public's sympathy throughout the region but also in Europe, is coming to Budva Riviera as well, and this year the TDI stage is preparing for a great party on the Adriatic. This stage will be home to some of the most exciting domestic and regional DJ stars, including Mark Funk, Danny Cruz, Oysha, Mirko & Meex, Divolly & Markward, Wreckage, Leo Fragogiannis, Rosske, Mario Eddie, Mr Mips and Davor Billyc.
The sixth Sea Dance will take place from Friday, August 30th, to Sunday, September 1st, on the hidden pearl of the Adriatic coast, the beach Buljarica in Budva.
So far, the shows have been confirmed by the most successful producers of the 21st century and one of the most popular performers in the world, David Guetta, the father of the Global Tech Movement and the three-time winner of the award for Best World DJ Sven Väth, one of the most prestigious electronic performers Richie Hawtin, the leading German producer and DJ Robin Schulz, French Club Sensation, Duo Ofenbach, and Famous German Producer Recondite.
There are also regional musicians such as the great Darko Rundek, powerful Senidah and popular Balkan rappers Surreal, Fox, Kuku $, Hazze and Bekfles.
Text by RTV Budva, on June 11th, 2019, read more at RTV Budva
11 June 2019 - The first results of the analysis of seawater quality for 100 public swimming areas, conducted by the Institute of Biology for the needs of Public Enterprise for Coastal Zone Management of Montenegro from May 23rd to May 26th, showed that on 89% of the beaches the quality of seawater was K1 class, while on 11% of the swimming areas the water was K2 class.
These results confirm that the seawater at Montenegrin beaches is of excellent quality, i.e., that the beaches have good sanitary conditions and that the water is safe for swimming and recreation.
Out of 16 swimming areas in Ulcinj Municipality, 13 had water with excellent quality, while 3 beaches had water with class K2, or satisfactory quality.
In Bar, the quality of seawater was K1 class on all 12 swimming areas, while in the municipality of Budva the analysis was done in 27 locations, one of which was recorded quality K2, while in other locations the sea water had K1 class quality.
The quality of seawater K1 was determined at 6 swimming areas in Tivat, while 3 of Tivat’s beaches had the quality class K2.
In Kotor, out of a total of 15 bathing areas, the quality K1 was determined at 12 locations, while for the remaining 3 the quality of the water was K2 class.
When it comes to water quality on the Herceg Novi coast, the analyses showed the sea water quality K1 class at a total of 20 swimming areas, while one beach had water with quality rating class K2.
The results of testing the sanitary quality of seawater, as well as the data on sea temperature, air temperature and salinity for each individual bathing site, can be found on the special application on the website www.morskodobro.com.
Since 1996, the Public Enterprise for Coastal Zone Management of Montenegro has been implementing annual programs for monitoring the sanitary quality of seawater at public beaches during the summer season in accordance with the provisions of the Water Act. Since 2010, this Program has been implemented by the Decree on classification and categorization of waters, as well as following other national and international regulations in the field of environmental protection.
In order to monitor the sanitary safety of seawater in public swimming areas and its overall quality, and in accordance with national and international regulations, the following parameters are examined: basic microbiological parameters - escherichia coli, intestinal enterococci, as well as additional chemical parameters: air temperature, water temperature (when taking a sample), salinity, pH value, the colour saturation with oxygen (% O2), ammonia (mg / l), floating waste materials (descriptive) and colour and transparency (descriptive).
Read more about Montenegro's coast at TMN's dedicated page.
11 June 2019 - Budva Beer Fest, a recently launched and very popular musical event in Montenegro, will take place from June 14 to 16 at the Lugovi Stadium (FK Mogren). The list of performers at the festival includes big regional stars of rock & roll, pop and mainstream music, reports News Agency RTV Budva. The organizers aim for this event to become one of the biggest events in the region, which will bring renowned music stars of the world to the audience in Montenegro.
"Held at the beginning of each summer season in Montenegro, this event has great potential to reveal the beauty of the Budva Riviera to the generations of new young guests from the region and the world, to achieve a good economic result, but also to offer quality entertainment content to the citizens of Montenegro and the region," says the official announcement by the organizers.
The strategic partners of the project are the Municipality of Budva and the Tourist Organization of Budva.
At the press conference held in the municipal building of Budva, on the occasion of organizing the popular music event, it was announced that by launching this project, Budva is trying to be competitive in the field of organizing economic events as well as entertainment tourism, which today makes a significant part of the regional tourist market. The Budva Beer Fest will gather people of all generations from the country and the region, quality performers of pop and rock music, some of them, world famous. Thus, this festival should mark the beginning of the peak part of the tourist season.
According to the organizers of the festival, 60,000 people are expected at the Stadium Lugovi, FC Mogren. The audience will have the opportunity to enjoy the music of the most popular performers of the region in three days, such as Plavi orkestar, Riblja čorba, Zabranjeno pušenje, Psihomodo pop, Who see, Brkovi, Tropico bend, YU grupa and Ortodox Celts.
The complete program and timetable of Budva Beer Fest is shown below.
Budva Beer Fest 2019
19:00h Tribute band
20:00h Budva City Orchestra
21:00h Željko Joksimović
23:00h Orthodox Celts
00:00h Hladno pivo
20:00h Loup Garula Blues
21:00h Plavi Orkestar
23:00h Yu Grupa
01:00h Dejan Petrović and Big band
19:00h Tribute band
20:00h Tropiko bend
21:00h Riblja čorba
23:00h Psihomodo pop
00:00h Zabranjeno pušenje
01:00h Who See
Read more about festivals in Montenegro on TMN's dedicated page.
11 June 2019 - The Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro recently stated that the goals of the state related to sustainable development - regionally balanced and sustainable economic development, full employment and decent work for all, should be fulfilled by 2030.
"Our sincere intention is to achieve the vision of sustainable development of Montenegro by 2030, which means that we should achieve regionally balanced and sustainable economic development, full employment and decent work for all," Minister Pavle Radulović said at the opening of the 18th Session of the Mediterranean Commission for the Sustainable development.
Within the framework of the two-year presidency of the Mediterranean Commission for Sustainable Development, Montenegro is the host of the session which is held from 11 to 13 June 2019.
The 18th Session of the Mediterranean Commission for Sustainable development is hosted at the Maestral Hotel in Budva.
During his presentation, Radulović reminded the participants that by adopting the 2030 National Sustainable Development Strategy, Montenegro became one of the first countries in the world that fully accepted and integrated the requirements of the United Nations Agenda for Sustainable Development into the national system. The goal of this strategy is to build a society based on continuous, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, protecting natural resources and strengthening social inclusion. Radulović also pointed out that with this strategy, Montenegro shows that its method for achieving sustainable development of its society is, in fact, having an objective and critical point of view in regards to current issues and finding appropriate solutions to these issues.
Minister Radulović highlighted that it is of great importance to launch initiatives that should concretize practical approaches and actions in order to implement the activities of the Mediterranean Action Plan and the Mediterranean Commission in the upcoming period. Also, he pointed out that an important measure for sustainable development is the creation of optimal practical models for applying the principles of integrated coastal management, in synergy with the application of the ecosystem approach in the planning of the purpose of marine areas.
Mediterranean Commission acts as an advisory body to the Contracting Parties of the Barcelona Convention, and its members, participating on equal footing, include representatives of the Member States and the European Commission, as well as Civil Society representatives from the region’s local authorities, economic partners (chambers of commerce, etc.), environmental NGOs, etc. It is basically a think tank on policies for promoting sustainable development in the Mediterranean Basin and focuses on key issues in its drive for tangible outcomes.
Read more about Politics in Montenegro on TMN's dedicated page.
10 June 2019 - The Director of the Public Enterprise for Coastal Zone Management of Montenegro, Predrag Jelušić, presented a total of 29 Blue Flags to various swimming areas (beaches) and one to Marina Bar, which is the only marina in Montenegro that has this prestigious ecological feature, reports National Tourism Organization of Montenegro.
The iconic Blue Flag is one of the world’s most recognised voluntary eco-labels awarded to beaches, marinas, and sustainable boating tourism operators. In order to qualify for the Blue Flag, a series of stringent environmental, educational, safety, and accessibility criteria must be met and maintained.
The Blue Flag program has been implemented in Montenegro since 2003 when NGO "EKOM" became an associate member of the Foundation for Environmental Education and thus acquired the right to be the National Operator for Montenegro. PE for Coastal Zone Management immediately recognized the importance of the Blue Flag and from the very beginning became the general sponsor and supporter of the Program, which is one of the most important activities related to the responsible management of the coast and beaches.
The Blue Flag is awarded for the current season based on the results from the previous season, which are assessed by the National Commission consisting of the representatives of the relevant Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism, the Public Enterprise for Coastal Zone Management, the Red Cross of Montenegro, the Port Management, and the environmental NGOs. At the beginning of each year, they review the statements and reports of beach tenants and analyse the fulfilment of 32 criteria in the area of safety and services on beaches, quality of seawater and environmental activities, regardless of the number of years spent in the Program.
Based on the proposal of the National Commission, each year the international jury awards certain swimming areas (beaches) with the Blue Flag. The jury gathers and makes the decisions in Copenhagen each year at the end of May. Members of the international jury are representatives of renowned institutions such as the World Tourism Organization (WTO), the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE), the International Rescue Organization (IRC), the UN Environment Program, The International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) and others.
Blue Flag Awarding is based on meeting the criteria in four basic areas: ecological education and information, water quality, ecological management and safety and service. For beaches, from 2017, it is necessary to comply with 33 criteria, out of which 28 are imperative and 5 are recommended. Some of the necessary criteria are: ecological and educational activities, highlighted map of the beach with marked different contents, compliance with requirements and standards regarding frequency of sampling of sea water, fulfilling requirements and standards in terms of microbiological, physical and chemical parameters of sea water, sanitary facilities with controlled drainage, emergency response plans etc.
Read more about exploring Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.