REQUEST FOR REIMBURSEMENT Subject: Visit to “REISELIV B2B” (Business to Business Tourism Fair), Lillestrøm, Norway, 14-15 January 2010
Grant offer Letter date: 6th January, 2010
Case No: 2008/114475
Innovation Norway made available to Fundatia Civitas Pentru Societatea Civila a financial grant to finance the expenses related to a visit at the REISELIV B2Bin Norway, where the objective was to identify potential Norwegian partner(s) for long term cooperation in the field of eco-/agro-tourism and/or sustainable development of value chain of locally made products in relation to tourism sector. The main purpose of the visit was to reveal the collaboration opportunities among enterprises from Norway and Romania, especially in the subject of adding value to local fruit products through integration of its into the tourism sector. Civitas Foundation was represented by two members of the staff, namely Istvan Mar (project coordinator, FRUTRAD project) and Rozalia Csaki (project coordinator, rural development). The REISELIV B2B Fair in Lillestrom was visited in its two day of exhibition on 14-15 January, 2010.
In the first day, in frame of the opening ceremony of the Fair were presented the great importance of such events for the overall strategic way of thinking about the future of this sector. In this year the main partner of the Fair was Spain. Just before the opening ceremony Mr. Knut Ringstad from Innovation Norway introduced the scope of the visit, the opportunities which should the Fair offer to the visitors of Romanian projects` representatives founded by Norway Grands Fund. Also, he provided the required assistance in order to enhance the communication among the potential partners for collaboration.
The first day we have spent time mainly by having an introduction to the exhibitors arrived from about 150 countries all around the world. Most of them were representatives of service providers from the tourism sector, PR tourism companies, and different enterprises offering complementary services (recreational) to the accomodation opportunities. In this day we have visited 28 stands of the exhibitors, mainly tourism service providers from Norway. The main obejctive was to reveal what collaboration opportunities should offer the Fair in order to organize the second day in manner to have specific meetings as much as possible.
In the secod day of the Fair our partner search activity was assisted by Jorunn Tonnesen and Anne Siri Brandrud from NorgesVel. Based on their local knowledge of the exhibitors, specifically of the farmers involved both in rural tourism and production of local products we have had several discussions with the representatives of such SMEs. Among the farmers to whom we had meetings should be enumerated the owner and manager of the Nossvold gard (Vestasveien 2870 Dokka), Hanne Veikaker (Veikaker Gard, Noresund), Ingvild Sonsteby (Gardsbutikken, Noresund). The farmers are combining the tourism services with production of local food production. This a very interesting way on how to enhance the adding value activity to the local products by a sustainable use of local natural resources. Their specific knowledge and experience make us inspired for a future collaboration opporunity with them. The small scale food processing like for eggs, cheese, sausages, etc. and the marketing strategy applied are of great interest for us and for our Romania farmers. Also, a very interesting discussion was with Mr. Rolf Engebakken the representant of Landevegen organization. This organization is promoting mainly the rural tourism by offering a sort of accomodation opportunities and time spending opportunities.
Project idea for a future collaboration: By inviting Norwegian farmers registered as SMEs and having succesful stories about how they succed the local farmers in Romania should develop their own strategy, and it would be a great opportunity to discuss about future collaboration in frame of bilateral partnerships. All of these should be integrated in manner to converge to the long-term maintenance and development of local agro-turism sector. Having regard that in Romania there are also other organizations involved in the development of local tourism, such as ADEPT Foundation and ANTREC the project should be implemented in joint cooperation with them by integrating their views and collaboration proposals. One of the opportunities to have such a face-to-face meeting would be the II. Fruit Festival of Odorhei Region. During the event the participants should have a more concrete interaction with the local farmers and development opportunities.