Budva – Uncontrolled construction on the coast could lead to that that soon in private accommodation Montenegro has half a millions of beds with which it would wipe out itself from the map of quality tourist destinations and with that stop the development of basic business branch – it is one of the messages of the expert public from the theme discussion about tourism in the Draft of the new Master plan.
At the moment they are talking about a figure of 400.000 beds which Montenegro has, of which only 10% are in the basic, that is hotel accommodation, while the rest is made of complementary capacities, that is beds in domestic accommodation, weekend houses and apartments, which are mostly being rented out of legal forms. In that way basic strategy of development of creation of high quality destination and such an expansion of private accommodation are in total collision.
Main planner, architect Ratimir Mugosa, said that the strategic goal is to increase the capacity on 50.000 hotel beds until 2010, in order for it to be increased to the figure of 100.000 beds until 2020 – said among other things Mugosa.
Pointing out that the Master plan begins from good assumptions and that it is on the line of strategy of tourism, professor PhD Rade Ratkovic warned that the plan is treating the condition which they came across and how to repair it.
– The plan is not offering how to remove this amount of non-tourist beds, and that is the only thing that can be a problem in its unrealistic picture. Because, no one is dealing with repairing of the condition in coastal municipalities were complementary capacities, that is private accommodation, weekend houses, and apartments have reaches the figure which is estimated to be between 300.000 and 400.000 beds. From the total number of beds on the coast that kind of accommodation makes 88%., while in hotel capacities there are just 37.000 beds or about 10%. That number of non-tourist beds is maybe even bigger because with every day new houses are being built and that is a process that no one has put under control. I think that that can be the biggest barrier in conduction of the plan. No matter how good hotels you will make, that mass of beds in private accommodation degrades the quality of staying, of destination and of hotels themselves – stressed Ratkovic for “Vijesti”.
A member of the review commission professor PhD Borislav Uskokovic notes that should the uncontrolled construction on the coast be continued soon we could reach the figure of half a millions of beds in domestic accommodation, which would ruin the quality tourism to which Montenegro strives.
– Lets count all the elevators and we will see several stored houses on Sveti Stefan, in Rafailovici, Ulcinj, Bar, Herceg Novi… We know that they are being built very intensively, especially the buildings for domestic accommodation, as well as private apartments. The problem is that in the near future we will have hundreds of new beds. In hotel keeping we would want to have that number of beds, we need that to improve our structure, because we wish to form a high quality tourist destination. But I am afraid that we will reach 500.000 or maybe even 600.000 beds on Montenegrin coast in private accommodation, and that we will not have enough space on the beaches. We used to approve such an offer, but now it has become a burden. Because Montenegro has to remain recognizable as “wild beauty” – non-built, healthy and space which is ecologically sustainable – warned Uskokovic.
He added that he sees the solution in formation of the offer of 100.000 beds in hotel industry.
– Then it is highly likely that this big construction in domestic accommodation will not be market oriented, but instead it will be used as secondary. In that way it will not be included in tourism because no one will want that kind of offer. We will have a lot of hotels at acceptable prices, so domestic accommodation will highly likely not be used, and by that we will have a relaxation of the beach space – explained Uskokovic.
With a remark that this is the real moment and very important time for development of tourism in Montenegro, expert for tourism in UNDP Oliver Benet said that Montenegro has the potential of becoming unique in Europe.
– However, along with that go numerous risks. Obviously there is a great interest of investors, and not just for the coastal area. It is essential that that interest is channeled in a suitable way. That means that this potential which Montenegro has, should not be destroyed for this, present, as well as for future generations. In the draft of the MP the problems with which Montenegro is facing with are well described, however, their solutions are less clear, as well as the mechanisms for their implementation. On the other hand I think that this plan has not taken into consideration all aspects of ecological and cultural tourism as it is suggested. There lacks one key thing in the pan and that is the clear vision where Montenegro sees itself and its tourism in 2020 – stressed Benet.
Benet thinks that the Government has to apply firm control of the Master plan if they wish to achieve the balanced development in regions.
– The development which is happening in wrong place and which is of wrong kind cannot be allowed. If someone is building without a permit, then you must demand from that investor to ruin and remove what he has built – said Benet.
LESS SPACE ON THE BEACHES THAN IN THE HOUSES
Professor Uskokovic thinks that on Montenegrin beaches there cannot be placed more tan 300.000 swimmers.
– It is said in the plan that we have found a possibility to enlarge the space on our beaches for about 800 900 square meters. That is a good capacity, but we can accommodate only about 120.000 swimmers and not more than that. We can conduct some investment programs, like what Italy is doing, and the question is whether we will ruin our coast if we start doing so. The problem of Montenegro is that we will pave the coast. Italians are warning that we must not copy them, because they use the expression “tuto muri” – “We paved everything”. That already threatens to us, that is so obvious, and we must solve that problem. How? I don’t know myself – warned Uskokovic.