The Nordic countries have a long tradition of co-operating in various fields under the auspices of the Nordic Council of Ministers. In 2017, the Nordic business ministers included tourism in their plans to increase Nordic cooperation and the region’s tourism share. In a competitive industry with increased importance on the global scale, strategic cooperation is vital.
A working group was established with the 8 Nordic Countries (Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland) to develop an action plan to carry the cooperation vision for the Nordic region through different subprojects. This Nordic tourism plan for the period 2019-2023 will support national tourism strategies and help tackle industry challenges through four strategic themes:
— Competitive Nordics: Increase the competitiveness of the tourism industry
— Innovative and smart Nordics: Develop the Nordics as an innovative and smart destination
— Sustainable Nordics: Ensure sustainable development and growth
— Attractive Nordics: Make the Nordics a more attractive and competitive destination
o Long-haul markets
o Nordic branding
o Sustainable Product Development
This plan made prior to the Covid-19 pandemic has been adjusted to fit the current needs of the region’s tourism industry. More than ever regional collaboration is vital and will help the tourism industry overcome the negative impact the pandemic has.
Sustainable Nordics and Attractive Nordic strategic themes were thus allocated funds under an umbrella title: “Reboot Nordic Tourism through Sustainable Product Development and Branding”. In the first stage of the projects, the collaboration is centred around preparing the region to target long haul markets when the time comes to attract international visitors. Before any marketing effort can be rolled out, the working group has highlighted the need to support the tourism industry through product development, so the region can provide the right sustainable Nordic tourism product when the word opens again, and the region can welcome visitors.
What’s in it for me (as an operator)?
This broad Nordic cooperation aims at strengthening the region’s tourism industry not only on a policy level but also on an operational level with benefit to all stakeholders. It provides local operators in Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland broader opportunities for cooperation on sustainability, product development and marketing towards key markets. As the projects develop, local operators and DMOs will have the opportunities to join their National Tourism Organisations and be involved further in marketing initiatives, b2b events, tradeshow and the like.
Idrissia E. Y. Thestrup
Position: Senior Manager Destination Development & Marketing
Master in Arctic engineering and economic sustainable development with a specialization in Arctic territories, I have worked for the last 14 years in Greenland. What was just supposed to be a week exploring Greenland ended becoming a passion and vocation of mine. Sustainable development, culture and nature preservation are at the core of my work with Greenland but also the Nordic region.