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Italy’s tourism minister says her ministry is a start-up

By Tuesday, 28 May 2024 10:36
Italy’s minister of tourism Daniela Santanché Italy’s minister of tourism Daniela Santanché

At the Trento Festival of Economics Italy’s minister of tourism Daniela Santanché said: “We are in point of fact a start-up”.

“In the past not enough was done to support tourism” 

Interviewed for the panel Tourism, Innovation and Artificial Intelligence at the Festival dell'Economia, organized by the Italian financial daily Il Sole 24Ore in Trento, the Italian tourism minister Daniela Santanché said “in the past, not enough was done to support tourism: only very recently tourism got a ministry so, in point of fact, we are a start-up.”   

“We must not become hostages to artificial intelligence”

With reference to the Italian National Recovery and Resilience Plan, the minister said that over €1 billion had been “invested to improve accommodation facilities.  I have a great ambition, - she continued, -I want to go back to seeing Italy first, not fourth as it is now. We will succeed if we boost the quality of services. Tourism is fundamental for economic growth.”  Minister Santanché went on to say that artificial intelligence must be at the service of, and not against, man emphasizing that “we must not become hostages to it, but approach it as an opportunity...of course, it must be regulated.” 

The tourist tax needs to be revised 

On the burning issue of the tourist tax, the minister said that the measure needs to be revised, and that it should not be used to balance a budget. "If you got that revenue for tourism, it must go back into tourism, and it must be used to improve the life of the community, which should not feel threatened by the arrival of tourists. Tourism must belong to everyone: from hostels to camper-van pitches...from normal to extra-luxury hotels. It is not blasphemous to talk about extra-luxury.”  

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