To remind, the Minister of Tourism launched an initiative to establish a special EU fund for tourism that would facilitate the use of EU funds to finance investment and sustainable development in tourism, reduce the impact of climate change, education and other areas important for tourism development in Europe. Also, the initiative is accompanied by the idea of establishing a Working Group for Tourism within the EU institutions, which would discuss how to address the many challenges facing the tourism sector. According to the Ministry of Tourism, during the meeting Minister Cappelli presented to the Spanish side the priorities of the Croatian Presidency of the Council of the European Union within the tourism sector related to advocating responsible and sustainable development policies with emphasis on encouraging diversity of tourism and development of underdeveloped areas. He also stressed the importance of the use of information and communication technologies and the digitalisation of the tourism system, as well as the need to establish common European regulations for digital platforms for the provision of tourism services. As part of his official visit to the Kingdom of Spain, Minister of Tourism Gari Cappelli held a bilateral meeting today with Spanish Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism Maria Reyes Maroto Illera. “I believe that the tourist exchange will be further increased by the re-establishment of the office of the Croatian Tourist Board in Madrid, whose reopening is expected in 2020 at the Croatian Embassy in order to minimize office costs. For even stronger connections, direct air connections are important, which are progressing from year to year, and today in the winter flight schedule three airlines fly on three air routes between Croatia and Spain, and I expect that in the future a regular daily line between Zagreb and Madrid”, emphasized the Minister of Tourism of the Republic of Croatia Gary Cappelli. Regarding tourism and wider cooperation between the two countries, the meeting concluded that Croatia is a popular destination in Spain and last year the number of Spanish tourists increased by 8,45 percent and the number of overnight stays from that market by 10,46 percent. Although according to previous announcements, the reopening of the CNTB office in Madrid was planned for January this year, just before the FITUR fair, the largest tourism fair in Spain, which takes place from 22.01-26.01.2020, it has been extended. On that occasion, the Minister also presented Croatia’s initiative to establish a European tourism brand for the joint promotion of member states in distant markets and called on Minister Reyes Maroto Illera to join the initiative and support the creation of better tourism visibility in European policies and institutions. In addition, Cappelli stressed that we should work together on a stronger withdrawal of funds from EU funds for the development of small and medium enterprises in tourism.