HUT welcomes gov't conclusion on operation of camping sites within maritime domain

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The Croatian Tourism Association (HUT) on Thursday welcomed the government's plan to regulate the operations of camping sites near and within the maritime domain and determine its boundaries in the areas where camping sites are located, describing it as important for business and investments.

"The situation until now was that the boundaries of the maritime domain were not determined or were determined in an 'odd' way, or were determined and registered but the concessions have expired. There were different situations so individual campsites operated as they did, without legal security," HUT director Veljko Ostojić said.

The government today adopted a conclusion on the urgent regulation of operations of camping sites near and within the maritime domain, entrusting the competent ministry to urgently determine the boundaries of the maritime domain in the areas where camping sites are located.

HUT, which brings together the biggest hotel and tourism companies, believes it is very important to determine the boundaries of the maritime domain to enable the signing of concession agreements.

Ostojić said this is also important in the context of land for tourism purposes, for which the government adopted a special regulation in 2023, obliging users to make subvidision surveys defining the size of the area of the camping site or hotel for 50-year lease.

Until the boundary of the maritime domain is determined, that is not possible, Ostojić said, commending in that context the government's decision. 

Since the government's decision gives a deadline until the end of 2025 to determine that boundary, until which time bans on the operation of camping sites will be put out of force, that means that camps can operate more calmly this and next season and that their owners can prepare for the changes, Ostojić said.

"The tourism sector and companies want the boundaries of the maritime domain to be established so they know under what conditions it will be possible to use it. We all know that the maritime domain and land for tourism purposes need to be paid for, but we all need to have long-term security and clearly defined terms of use of the domain and the related land," said Ostojić.

He stressed that it was not true that hotel companies were not charged anything.

"They are, but the concession fee for the use of the maritime domain has possibly not been charged because it has not been determined and no tender has been published for that, but that is not the fault of tourism companies," Ostojić said.