Rural Green Tourism: Current Trends and Development Prospects
Professor, National University of Food Technologies, Ukraine, Kyiv
PhD, Assistant of Department of tourism, National Univelsity „Lviv Politekhnika”, Ukraine, Lviv
Summary. The article determines that in the current conditions of development of the economy of Ukraine the structure of the tourism industry is changing due to the development of perspective types of tourism, including rural green tourism. The purpose of the article is to identify the features, trends and prospects of rural green tourism development. Results. One of the newest forms of tourism is rural green tourism - a priority area in the tourism industry, which opens opportunities for solving a number of problems of rural development. Rural green tourism is a specific form of recreation in the countryside, which has ample opportunity to use the natural, material and cultural potential of certain regions. In the structure of the tourist complex of Ukraine of recent years rural green tourism has become one of the leading and most attractive types of tourism specialization, which requires increase its effective development and management. The analysis of the activity of rural green tourism objects will make it possible to increase the attractiveness of rural green tourism. The development of rural green tourism in the regions of Ukraine every year becomes more powerful and one of the perspective ways of solving social issues regarding employment in all regions and their socio - economic development. The directions of rural green tourism development affect its development prospects. Value/originality. Rural green tourism is viewed from two sides: first, as a promising and attractive destination in the tourism industry, and second, as an object that will increase the potential and potential of rural areas. In the course of the study, the motivational content of rural green tourism was identified as an opportunity to extend the tourist appeal of specialized tourism. For the developing of green tourism in Ukraine promotes the study of international experience of tourism.
Keywords: rural green tourism, factors, directions, current trends, development.
Received: 01/12/2019. Accepted: 01/03/2020
Copyright © 2020 Svitlana Gutkevych, Myroslava Haba. Published by Vilnius University Press. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Tourism is one of the modern branches of the national economy, which has socio-economic importance and is connected with the provision of tourist services, meeting the needs of consumers of the tourist market.
In the current conditions of economic development of Ukraine, the structure of the tourism industry is changing due to the development of promising types of tourism, including rural green tourism. It is a specific form of recreation in the countryside, which has wide opportunities to use the natural, material and cultural potential of certain regions.
The role of the tourism industry over the past decade has grown significantly since tourism is not only a way to rest and leisure, and is a significant source of replenishment for the regions’ budgets. For many countries, tourism is a priority area of the national economy. Along with the development of the tourism industry, new forms of tourism activity have emerged, which over time have occupied their niches in the tourist services market.
One and with popular forms of tourism are rural green tourism - a perspective in the tourism industry that offers opportunities for a multitude of problems rural development. Rural tourism is one of the most important areas of rural development and a means of improving the standard of living of rural populations.
It should be noted that rural green tourism for Ukraine is a new direction in the tourism industry and one of the ways of rural development, which will allow to solve a number of problems of rural territories on the basis of replenishment of local budgets.
Rural green tourism is gaining increasing popularity in the current conditions of tourism market development. It is one of the areas of sustainable development of the tourism industry, which is aimed at the protection of Ukrainian natural and cultural and historical heritage, promotion of interethnic tolerance and encourage people to actively participate in solving their financial problems, the unemployed, and to overcome the characteristic climate of Ukraine seasonal tourist product
Scientific research and with participant experience shows that the accelerated development of green tourism can play as a catalyst of economic restructuring, demographic ensure stability and solve urgent social and economic problems in rural areas.
The main goal of rural green tourism is to create a new tourism product that goes beyond the traditional idea of Ukraine’s tourism offer, and should take into account the natural, historical and cultural specificity of the regions, and more significantly diversify Ukraine’s traditional offerings.
Green tourism has a positive effect on solving socio-economic problems of the village. First of all: expanding the employment of rural population, especially women, opportunities for farmers to earn additional income; greater employment opportunities for the farmer not only in the manufacturing sector but also in the service sector. At a certain increase in the number of tourists there is a need to satisfy their various requests, which in turn stimulates the development of services: transport, communications, trade, service life, recreational and entertainment and others.
The development of rural green tourism requires the creation of economic and organizational prerequisites, the interest of local authorities in spreading this movement and the effective use of existing housing stock. The active development of rural green tourism will contribute not only to solving the challenges facing the countryside, but also to creating a competitive tourism product, taking into account regional specificity, which will allow to ensure the effective development of the recreational industry of the regions.
The result of the development of rural green tourism will be better improvement of rural estates, streets, villages; higher level of incentives for development of social infrastructure, increase of cultural and educational level of rural population.
The aim of the article is to identify the features, trends and prospects of rural green tourism development.
Methods: monographic, statistical, economic analysis and abstract logic methods are used in the research.
1. Literature review
Many researchers are considering issues related to the management and development of the tourism industry, including rural green tourism.
The terminological definition of rural green tourism is proposed in the draft Law of Ukraine “On Rural Green Tourism” as a recreational type of tourism, which provides for the temporary stay of tourists in rural areas (villages) and receipt of services of rural green tourism. This concept has become widespread among Ukrainian travellers and tour operators, as well as state structures that deal with the development and regulation of this type of tourism in Ukraine. The term “rural green tourism” is enshrined in the legislation, the legal content of which is interpreted as a holiday in the Ukrainian countryside.
V. Birkovych (2008) explored rural green tourism as a priority for the development of Ukraine’s tourism industry. He considers rural green tourism as a rural green tourism as a specific form of holiday in private households in rural areas of the property and manpower subsidiary farming or naturally and recreational terrain and cultural, historical and ethnographic heritage of the region.
M. J. Rutynskyy , J. C. Zinko (2006) considered rural green tourism as tourism, which takes place in rural settlements. The authors investigated organisation and functioning of rural green tourism in Ukraine.
According to the definition of the NGO “Union for the promotion of rural green tourism”, rural green tourism, as a type of tourism - is a holiday in rural, resort or nature conservation areas, which requires well equipped private estates and appropriate infrastructure.
However, addressing Mr. Roble related to the management and control facilities of rural green tourism in determines the need for further research. The state approach to ensuring the efficient development of rural green tourism forms the prospects for development, development of new ones and deepening of the existing theoretical and practical provisions aimed at increasing the attractiveness and prospects of development, as well as finding new directions of tourism development, incl. rural green in order to maximally meet the needs of consumers of rural green tourism services.
2. International experience as a factor in the development of rural green tourism
In the world, the alternative to rural green tourism is considered agriculture in terms of profits. Rural green tourism offers opportunities both to improve the budgetary capacity of local governments and to bring urban and rural people closer together.
In the current conditions of development of economic sectors and integration of Ukraine into the world economic space, it is necessary to study the international experience of tourism development. In the process of determining the directions of rural green tourism development, the international experience of tourism activity can contribute to the development of rural green tourism in Ukraine.
Foreign experience of state regulation of rural green tourism has shown that the object in the organization of recreation in the countryside is a rural family living in the village, running their own farm / peasant economy and using its property, providing services in the field of rural green tourism.
Evolutionary rural green tourism started is developing in Europe recently, with the end of the twentieth century. Components of this phenomenon were: first, ethno-cultural and socio-demographic changes in society, consolidation in it of a healthy lifestyle ideology, understanding of the values of the natural environment and natural products and mass production of artificial and synthetic materials, and as a consequence, the need of urban residents in leisure in the countryside as one of its alternative types; secondly, the rapid development of scientific and technological progress in industry, the dismissal of workers and the need for job creation in rural areas; thirdly, the need to generate additional income for rural families from renting vacant premises and selling quality natural agricultural products; fourth, the need to protect and restore rural landscapes; Fifth, the demand for recreation in rural areas. Thus, a proposal was formed to meet this demand by establishing a rural green tourism industry based on securely functioning farms and providing appropriate services (Kuts, Mamonova, Chaplyhin, 2008:38).
In the late 90’s of the twentieth century. all national rural tourism organizations in Europe have joined the European Federation for Farm and Village Tourism or abbreviated as EuroGites. The main goals of this organization are aimed at: comprehensive promotion of recreation in rural areas, exploring and preserving the potential of rural tourism in Europe, promoting the development of green tourism in its agrarian areas, targeted investment in rural green tourism development projects, as it develops at the expense of its own source of income, providing consultations, advertising, training and assistance to organizers of rural green tourism.
According to the expert analysis, this type of activity will create from 0.5 to 0.9 million jobs, and in Europe more than 2 million rural estates could be offered to tourists. The European Union sees rural green tourism as one of the main levers of raising the standard of living of its rural territories.
The process of developing this type of tourism in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Austria, Hungary, Romania, Poland and other countries is an integral part of the complex socio-economic development of countries, regions, villages, territories and the means of solving their problems. The popularity of tourist services in rural areas in these countries ranks second.
Each country defines certain methods of regulation and organization of rural green tourism, and in the process of developing this business achieves large gains, which depend on the level of income of the population, natural climatic and ethno cultural conditions.
The current system of tourism regulation and organization, for example in the UK, is linked to the adoption of the Law on Tourism Development and Tourism is an effective industry. Established in the UK, the National Organization for Rural Tourism and Agro tourism is accrediting estates that offer tourist services. Along with the development of tourism, the popularity of rural green tourism is increasing, which can be explained in particular by the fact that English farmers are united in order to smooth the seasonality of work and offer more diverse leisure services. In the south-west of England, old farms are being restored, which are a great success for tourists, where the increased level of comfort is combined with partially preserved old furniture. This can be a useful experience for Ukraine in Transcarpathian, Chernihiv, Lviv, Ivano - Frankivsk, Chernivtsi regions.
Interesting is the experience of Germany, where the popularity of shopping tours, especially for tourists from neighbouring Poland. Of particular interest is the concept of tourism development in the peripheral regions of Germany, developed in the early 1980s, to offer outdoor recreation without the use of expensive infrastructure and the provision of comfortable living conditions. At the same time, the owners, who receive up to 8 beds for the reception of guests, are exempt from paying taxes.
The leaders of the agricultural tourism industry in Europe are Spain and France. The peculiarity of rural green tourism in France is the attraction for tourists of really old villages without imitations. The countryside of this country offers a more comfortable holiday than in southern Europe. It is in France that the National Organization of Holiday Homes and Green Tourism operates. In 1967, the government adopted a plan for the joint development of rural areas and tourism, with financial support from the private sector, and coordination of a government commission. The plan foresees the division of the coastal area into 16 sectors, of which nine are equipped with beaches, lakeside recreation areas and water sports facilities. The rest of the so-called “green” zones preserve a unique landscape and wildlife. In France, the objects of rural green tourism differ in ethnographic grounds - these are the estates of Champagne, Provence, Gascony, Normandy, Savoie, as well as in the countryside there are special categories of estates that offer rest for disabled people, children during school holidays, rest for the owners together with their pets. The Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of France, as well as the Ministry of Youth and Sports, oversee and certify the country’s resort villages, oversee the implementation of the investment program “Gotes de France program chalets-loisirs” and the quality of recreation.
Green tourism in Spain due to the increased number of tourists from other regions of the world through compliance with the standards of quality of service, controlled by owner’s associations, networking promoted rural tourism. Every year, about 1.2 million people use Spain’s rural green tourism services. Classification of rural households in the country distinguishes three groups: the first group - rural hotel (HR- hotel rural); the second group - Castle, the historic mansion (CA - Castillo); The third group - farmhouse (CR - casa rural). There is also a categorization of rural hotels according to the INNS OF SPAIN system, according to which they are assigned 1 to 4 tulips (Luzhanska, 2008:62-63).
Regulation of the development of the tourism and hotel industry in Italy is due to the adoption in 1983 of a law on the development and improvement of tourism activities, which defined the bodies of tourism management at the regional level and the order of their functioning. In the 90 years of the twentieth century. thanks to the preferential tax regime for agricultural business in Italy, prestigious cottages and guesthouses have been built not less than 3 stars. The peculiarities of tourism in this country are related to the increased interest in staying in the monasteries around which special hotels are built. For example, one of the monasteries near Siena, nuns are serving. In Ukraine, such services are provided by religious tourism.
Austria’s tourism sector is linked to the image of the country with a “relaxation in the clean air and hospitality”, which has achieved a high level of international and domestic tourism. Nature, architecture and eco-friendly products appeal to supporters of rural green tourism, which offers a variety of services in 15,000 registered rural green tourism sites with a total capacity of 170,000 beds.
In the country, the tourism infrastructure was formed in the 1960s, and some tax exemptions are provided for the peasants engaged in the reception of tourists. Austrian tourism brings together small and medium-sized family farms that meet certain holiday requirements.
The effective development of rural green tourism in Austria and Hungary is conditioned by the historical impact of these countries being in Austro - Hungary at one time.
In Hungary at the state level, rural green tourism is classified as a personal peasant farm and appropriate tax instruments have been created. More than seven thousand rural residents are involved in this type of tourism in the country. A large number of tourists visiting the estate in the most popular areas for vacation in Hungary: South- West region yours, Eastern Region Szolnok (near river Tisa) and famous Horta-badskyy brim. Feature of rural green tourism in this country is its combination with national traditions of horse breeding.
The interests of participants in the rural green tourism market in Romania are represented by ANTREC - the National Association of Rural, Environmental and Cultural Tourism. This organization has more than three thousand members, more than 2500 agro-settlements. Rural green tourism here is especially developed in the Southern Carpathians and is focused on preserving the natural environment and ethno-cultural traditions of Romania (Official site of the Union…).
In Lithuania, the basic units of rural green tourism are rural cottages, which can accommodate up to 8 people in separate double rooms. They are perfectly arranged, incl. and the surrounding areas, the tourist receives a full hotel service, but at the same time feels a home comfort, which makes the holiday very attractive.
Latvia has a great experience in the development of rural green tourism, because for a long time foreigners are the main contingent of tourists wishing to relax in the countryside. The Government has given due attention to this promising type of tourism that helps to tackle rural unemployment and has approved a number of relevant regulations. According to the Association of Rural Green Tourism of Latvia, in recent years in rural areas almost ten times increased the number of tourist destinations, 19 times - the number of beds. Such services were used by more than 20% of foreign tourists (mostly from Finland, Germany and the USA).
Very useful for Ukraine is the experience of Poland, with which Ukraine shares borders and where rural green tourism has been actively developing. In Poland, about 100,000 beds in rural green tourism are offered in rural areas, with over 8,000 rural estates operating, of which almost 780 are located in the Pomeranian Voivodeship. In this country, rural green tourism has been developing since the 1990s and is actively supported by the state. Rural residents wishing to start rural green tourism activities and those already providing such services are not subject to the law governing economic (business) activity. Therefore, the monetary fees for the respective services are not subject to value added tax. The legislation also provides, under certain conditions, for exemption of income and income tax on natural persons.
The law requires villagers to register holidaymakers in a special journal. Civil liability may be caused by non-compliance or improper fulfilment of the terms of the agreements between the parties, as well as damage. Such liability is realized through compensation for the value of the damage caused. The mutual rights and obligations of the parties are defined in the contract concluded between them. The owner may be exempt from tax if the house he rents belongs to an agricultural estate; rooms are rented out to tourists, not to third parties; rooms for tourists are located in a dwelling house of a rural family, and not in another specially adapted building; the number of rooms that are rented to the rest does not exceed five.
Polish legislation clearly distinguishes the basic concepts and principles of rural green tourism from other types of tourist services provided in rural areas, but is legally related to business activities.
In order to effectively develop and operate in the field of rural green tourism, it is most appropriate for Ukraine to adopt the experience of Poland certification and categorization of estates. They are carried out every two years on a voluntary basis by the Polish Rural Tourism Hospitality Federation, which provides additional advertising support from this federation. Category division is for her a tool for product development and quality control. The purpose of division into categories - improve the quality of services in settlements in rural areas, the unification of marking objects recommendation object to the client. The maximum category of agricultural estates is the third one, which corresponds to three suns. According to Polish legislation, guest estates are not subject to mandatory standardization, but these premises may only be used for the provision of accommodation services in accordance with certain requirements approved by the order of the President of the Council of Ministers.
Considering the Polish experience, the system of ecological certification and voluntary categorization “Green farmstead”, developed by the All-Ukrainian Union for the promotion of rural green tourism, is already in place in Ukraine. The certification system is based on the principles of reducing the harmful impact of rural green tourism enterprise on the environment, the support of folk traditions and crafts, the local economy, the development of environmentally friendly types of entertainment and recreation.
For Ukraine also noteworthy promotional system of Polish agritourism farms. Poland annually publishes tens of thousands of catalogues and booklets on rural green tourism services developed for all territorial levels: voivodship groups, voivodeships, communes and even individual villages. The advantage of catalogues is the saturation of their specific practical information: prices, addresses, categories and types of estates.
It would be appropriate for Ukraine to apply such a concept as a “tourist product certificate”, which is widespread in Europe, especially in Poland. For the last nine years, the Polish Tourism Organization has been organizing the “Best Tourist Product” competition, which aims to show the most interesting and most attractive places for tourists in Poland. Every year the best tourist products in Poland are awarded with the appropriate certificates, thus stimulating the effective activity of the staff and the organization to ensure a high level of customer service. This will provide high quality and efficient services, as well as provide additional incentive for the staff to organize the high level of quality of service of consumers of tourism services, in particular rural green tourism and will influence the effective further development of this type of tourism in Ukraine.
On the basis of the analysis of the experience of rural green tourism development in other countries, the directions and prospects of rural green tourism development in Ukraine in improving its legislative regulation have been determined (Table 1).
Table 1. Characteristics of directions of development of rural green tourism in Ukraine on the basis of international experience
The direction of development of rural green tourism in Ukraine
Germany, Italy, Austria, Poland, Hungary
Preferential tax treatment
Joint development of rural areas and tourism with financial support from the private sector and government coordination; division of the area into recreation areas and green areas
Agritourism business development related to resort, specialization in gastronomic and tasting tours
Construction of special hotels in rural areas near monasteries
Employment of guests in gathering herbs, cooking dairy products, pasture
Seaside estates, horse farms, wine estates, fishing houses
Ethnographic types of rural green tourism
Source: created by the authors
Having analysed the international experience of the organization and development of rural green tourism, we note the new trends in its development related to the process of globalization. Globalization in the tourism sphere, above all, implies the disappearance of any barriers in international tourist exchanges, the tourist “reduction” of the globe due to the cheapness of transcontinental air travel and the creation of more or less homogeneous tourist infrastructure in all other countries of the world. Globalization in rural green tourism is gaining ground, primarily through the introduction of global agro-tourism databases and global e-commerce mechanisms for these services.
It should be noted that one of the most effective global information systems for booking rural green tourism and agro tourism in all regions of the world (http://www.allrural.com). According to its reports, this electronic system already accounts for almost 7% of the world’s sales of rural green tourism services. The prospects of using such information systems should be decisive in the system of global promotion and marketing of rural tourism services in the world and in Ukraine in particular.
Using the experience of organizing rural green tourism of the above-mentioned foreign countries, the directions and prospects of development of rural green tourism in Ukraine are considered, taking into account geographical, ethno-cultural, political, economic features.
The strategic goal of rural green tourism development in Ukraine is to create a competitive domestic tourist product on the domestic and global markets, capable of meeting the needs of both compatriots and foreigners to the maximum. The task is to expand the domestic and constant growth of inbound tourism, to ensure the integrated development of recreational areas and tourist centres, taking into account the socio-economic interests of their population.
An indispensable factor in the successful development of rural green tourism is advertising and information publications that will allow rural green tourism to effectively engage in the revival of the village and the economy as a whole.
The main directions for the effective development of rural green tourism in Ukraine, taking into account international experience, should be: creating favourable conditions for obtaining tax breaks and loans to owners of private estates, advertising of agricultural services, the issuance of various guides, the spread of various types of agro tourism business, including specialization tourism.
Currently, in the tourism business, rural green tourism occupies a certain niche in the global tourism market and receives considerable sales and tourist attraction. The current international experience shows that the accelerated development of green tourism can play a catalyst for the creation of new tourist attractive products and provide demographic stability and solution to the socio-economic problems of rural areas and increase the tourist interest in them. That is why studying of the international experience will allow us to adopt positive and effective components that will contribute to the development of rural green tourism in Ukraine.
3. Regulation of rural green tourism
Research into regulating the development of tourism, in particular rural green tourism, has identified certain features that need to be taken into account for its continued effective functioning.
The peculiarity of rural green tourism is that it is carried out both on the macro - and the micro level. The features of the development of rural green tourism at the state level should be considered: the need to attract more investment for its development; the imperfection and bureaucratic procedures of licensing and permitting entities; too many types of taxes to be paid to business entities operating in the field; manifestation of imperfect financial and credit policy and inflationary processes in the activity of objects of this sphere. The disadvantage of rural green tourism development at the state level is that it is under-promoted compared to other types of tourism.
All sectors of the economy are subject to state regulation, which is a set of instruments by which the state sets requirements for businesses and citizens. It includes statutory instruments, formal and informal regulations and ancillary rules defined by the state, as well as non-governmental or self-regulatory organizations to which it delegates relevant powers; - a certain list of measures undertaken by the state structures aimed at controlling the activities of tourist organizations.
An important task for the development of rural green tourism is the regulation of the regulatory and legal framework in the field of rural green tourism, given the changing environmental conditions. This should ensure effective interaction of state and public structures for the successful development of the industry.
The legislative and regulatory acts of Ukraine regarding rural green tourism are the Constitution of Ukraine, the Laws of Ukraine “On Tourism”, “On Personal Peasant Farming”, the draft Law of Ukraine “On Rural Green Tourism” and some other legal acts.
As the analysis showed, for the effective development and regulation of rural green tourism, the Law of Ukraine “On Rural Green Tourism”, whose draft was adopted by the Parliament (Verkhovna Rada) Resolution No. 2179 of November 16, 2004, should be implemented. This Law defines the general legal, organizational and socio-economic principles of implementation of the state policy of Ukraine in the field of rural green tourism and aimed at ensuring the citizens’ rights enshrined in the Constitution of Ukraine for rest, freedom of movement, health protection, safe for life and health Elias spiritual needs and other rights in the implementation of tourist travel. It establishes the principles of rational use of tourist resources and regulates relations related to the organization and implementation of rural green tourism in the territory of Ukraine (Gutkevych, Haba, Korinʹko, 2016).
The specific features reflected in the draft Law of Ukraine “On Rural Green Tourism” are changes in the specificity of licensing of tourist activities; mandatory (optional) licensing of certain types of rural green tourism; regulation of issues related to the need for professional training of entities providing and carrying out activities in the field of rural green tourism; development of new types of contracts and clarification of their content, concluded between the subject of activity of this type and the tourist. The project proposes to develop a standard that will regulate the requirements for the provision of rural green tourism services, namely the requirements for premises, sanitary and hygienic conditions, staff, conditions of food, fire safety, registration of holidaymakers, civil liability of owners, property insurance.
In the Law of Ukraine “On Tourism” rural green tourism is classified as “rural” and separately “green”.
The next normative regulatory document is Presidential Decree No. 1356 of 20.12. 2000 “On the basic principles of development of the social sphere of the village”, in which one of the means of development is “development of ancillary activities in the field of tourism (green tourism) and giving priority to” issues of revival of national culture, customs, traditions and rituals, the development of folk crafts, which is impossible without the development of tourist activities.
The new stage of development of green tourism will lead to adoption of the “Concept of the State program of development of tourism and resorts for the period till 2022” (Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine of 08.01.2013 p. Number 638-p) and “draft state program of development of tourism and resorts period up to 2022”, which will determine its priority and enable it to attract private sector investment resources to recreational and tourism businesses and support activities.
On the basis of the analysis of the legislation of Ukraine on rural green tourism we have determined that the main directions of state policy that will contribute to the further effective development of this sphere are the following: improvement of legal bases of regulation of relations in this field of activity; identifying rural green tourism as an important link in the tourism industry of Ukraine, encouraging national and foreign investment in this area and creating new jobs; development of inbound and inland rural green tourism, promoting its transformation into a highly profitable and competitive link in the tourism industry; creation of proper conditions for development of rural green tourism, support of priority directions of tourist activity in this sphere by simplification and harmonization of tax, currency, customs, border and other types of regulation; comprehensive encouragement of Ukrainian citizens to participate in the development of rural green tourism as a highly profitable link in the tourism industry and an additional source of replenishment of personal income of citizens, local and state budgets; taking into account consumer demand for certain types of rural green tourism services when developing and approving national and local regional development programs (Odzimek, Zhelyak, 2009:60). The directions of state policy in the field of rural green tourism are summarized in Figure 1.
The analysis shows that further development of rural green tourism requires an in-depth study of this industry and its support from the state. In Ukraine, there are no institutions at the national level dealing with the problems of rural green tourism development. Various NGOs are taking the lead in implementing these functions.
One of the most active structures that unites the activities of the owners of the estates is the Union for the promotion of rural green tourism in Ukraine. This all-Ukrainian non-profit public association, which unites the owners of the estates, is an initiator of the ideas of rural green tourism development, founded in 1996. Its purpose is to promote recreation in the Ukrainian village, promote the development of rural infrastructure and self-employment of the rural population, conservation and the environment. On the initiative of the Union, regional centres of rural green tourism have been established and are functioning successfully in 17 regions of Ukraine. They are concerned with informing about the leisure opportunities of the regions, work on the image of their region and control the quality of the provision of tourist services to the relevant entities.
About 850 estates in 20 regions of the country are members of this association. However, it is impossible to determine precisely the number of offers in the rural tourism market, since even more owners operate independently.
Due to the active cooperation of rural green tourism units with local authorities and international funds (such as the Renaissance Foundation), practical experience in organizing and receiving holidaymakers in the estates of the owners (Transcarpathian, Ivano -Frankivsk district) is conducted, information campaigns are held on promotion of rural green tourism services. The Union cooperates closely with the agrotourism organizations of Hungary, Poland, Austria, France and makes extensive use of their experience.
Fig. 1. Main directions of state policy in the field of rural green tourism
Source: GUTKEVYCH S., HABA M., KORINʹKO M. (2016). Pryvablyvistʹ Ukrayinsʹkykh Karpat: silʹsʹkyy zelenyy turyzm. p.98
We have analysed the main specific functions performed by the Union for the promotion of rural green tourism, namely: strategic planning of rural holidays; presentation of rural holidays in the domestic and international markets; presentation of rural holidays in the domestic and international markets; development and implementation of public quality standards; providing training for the organization of rural holidays; advertising and information support; solving the issue of employment of rural population, improving the technical infrastructure and improving the villages, as well as preserving the historical and cultural heritage and environment in cooperation with local self-government bodies.
The analysis showed that representatives of the Union for Promotion of Rural Green Tourism are engaged in holding conferences, exhibitions, festivals, round tables, trainings in the regions of the country, publish a magazine, manuals and other promotional and information products in order to promote rural green tourism in Ukraine more and more effectively.
The most popular problems of legislative, economic, financial, advertising and information, organizational support for rural green tourism development in Ukraine are analysed and discussed on the pages of the popular science magazine Rural Green Tourism published by the Union for the Promotion of Rural Green Tourism.
The development of rural green tourism should be supported both at the state and non-governmental organizations. Its main aspects are agrarian-social, cultural-tourist and ecological-natural. Therefore, for the successful development and regulation of rural green tourism, the interaction of state and public structures in charge of the respective industries is required.
An important feature of state regulation of rural green tourism are the principles that ensure the coherence of economic interests of enterprises, society and the state. Their observance should be a kind of warning of the systematic and destructive interference with the economic mechanism of management. Principles of state regulation, as well as managerial activity, are the result of generalization of inherent essential features, characteristic relationships and constantly reproductive features that become basic in the work of authorized subjects of state regulation.
The state regulation of rural green tourism in Ukraine provides for the following principles:
- determination of priority directions of state policy;
- distribution of power between executive authorities and local self-government bodies;
- fixing specific managerial functions within the competence of state regulatory bodies;
- systematic regulatory support of state regulation;
- reation of financial base;
- integrity, coherence and effectiveness of mechanisms for implementing public policy.
A key principle of state regulation of rural green tourism is the delegation of functions and powers of the central executive authority in this area to public associations of rural households, provided that such public associations comply with the requirements established by law.
The main priority directions of state policy in the field of rural green tourism are defined in the national program of tourism development in Ukraine.
The implementation of state policy in the field of rural green tourism is carried out by: defining and implementing the main directions of state policy in this type of activity; sending budget funds for the development and implementation of development programs, promotion and promotion of rural green tourism in Ukraine and abroad; normative regulation of relations in this field; delegation of authority to carry out categorization of rural green tourism objects by rural associations; organizing and maintaining statistical accounting and reporting of this activity; organization and implementation of state control over compliance with legislation; assistance in the initiation, development and implementation of international programs, as well as programs implemented through external investments, grants, etc. in the field; providing comprehensive assistance in creating the right infrastructure.
The basic principles of state support for rural green tourism are equal conditions, focus on individual agriculture and local community, financing of projects in the field of rural green tourism, development of rural infrastructure, advertising, participation in exhibitions and fairs, the creation of folk and cultural reserves and national parks (on the basis of settlements that are carriers of a certain brand), introduction of a holistic system of training for people involved in rural green tourism and some others.
In order to support the development of rural green tourism at the regional level, it is necessary to implement measures aimed at creating a highly profitable tourism industry, which should meet the needs of domestic and international tourism, taking into account the natural, climatic, recreational, socio-economic and historical and cultural potential of the region and its opportunities.
The analysis showed that the sites that are involved in the implementation and / or provision of activities in the field of rural green tourism include estates and agro- villages. Rural facilities that are designed to receive visitors are commonly referred to as agro-settlements or estates. The farmstead - a dwelling situated in a rural area, contains no more than five rooms, adapted for the habitation of tourists, and belongs to the private property rights of an individual or his family members engaged in the management of a personal peasant farm and provides tourist services.
The subjects that carry out and provide activities in the field of rural green tourism are: rural owners, as well as their established public organizations, their associations, the activity of which is a prerequisite for the proper creation of supply and provision of rural green tourism services; individuals - consumers of rural green tourism services. The main actors of the rural green tourism market are presented in Figure 2.
Entities carrying out or providing activities in the field of rural green tourism may also include individuals and legal entities providing ancillary services (agents, brokers, advertising, information, etc.) to rural owners or consumers of rural green tourism services.
State regulation of rural green tourism affects the effectiveness of its development, as support for rural green tourism at the macro level provides new opportunities not only for this tourism industry, but also for the economy of the country as a whole.
Fig. 2. Main actors in the rural green tourism market
Source: created by the authors
4. Clustering - as a factor enhancing the potential of rural green tourism
One of the elements of the mechanism of development and functioning of rural green tourism should be in most regions of Ukraine clusters of rural tourism, which brings together representatives of business, local government, education, science and public organizations. The inefficient use of time in creating an enabling environment for this activity, the attempt to impose numerous requirements and permitting procedures on the farmer becomes a significant obstacle to the development of rural green tourism, thus creating opportunities for informal provision of services in this area.
The tourist cluster is a group of interconnected enterprises and structures of the tourism industry and related industries (health, communications, transport) that, in their interaction, complement each other in the process of creating a complex. of the region’s tourism product. The tourist cluster is a rather compact area of growth of the tourism industry, which is characterized by a certain tourism specialization and attaches particular importance to the attractive (attractiveness) component of the cluster. In addition, external communications (providing transport (proximity) communications within the cluster) are of great importance.
Cluster associations are a very effective form of regional development and a form of organizing innovation processes, because in this case, it is not individual enterprises that compete on the market, but complexes that can reduce their own costs through joint technological cooperation of companies.
This type of association is capable of forming a characteristic economic space that functions as the structural elements of the global system, since it aims at expanding the sphere of free trade, free movement of human resources and capital.
The rural green tourism cluster can be defined as a group of related enterprises, institutions and organizations of tourism and hospitality (tour operators, travel agents, accommodation, catering) and other related industries (transport and telecommunications) concentrated in a certain territory. ‘communications, trade and others.), local authorities and associations that interact.
The essence of the cluster model of rural green tourism is to ensure business activity, improve business lending, and achieve an unbroken and interdependent cooperation between cluster participants. Also, the cluster model of rural green tourism is characterized by respect for equality and creating conditions for increased competition in the market for rural green tourism.
The main task of the cluster of rural green tourism entities is education, financing, marketing, and comprehensive support for the development of rural green tourism in Ukraine.
The members of the rural tourism cluster can be not only independent owners of estates, but also rural advisory services, that is, enterprises that will be responsible for providing advisory services for the organization and implementation of rural tourism.
Each of the participants in the rural tourism cluster will fulfil a clearly established function - in the process of formation and sale of the rural tourism tourism product, the members of the cluster will be closely connected with each other. Rural advisory services - advisory firms, including training, marketing of rural tourism services, etc. can function as participants in the rural green tourism cluster.
Public authorities and local self-government bodies should provide effective support to all members of the cluster in the process of organizing rural tourism. In addition, their competence should include standardization and certification of tourist accommodation establishments in rural areas, assessing the quality of products and services, and compliance with certain standards.
Credit unions established through the unification of property and interests of citizens will provide funds to finance the development of rural tourism business entities.
The importance of the cluster approach to the organization of rural tourism lies in the fact that it pays great attention to territorial and social aspects of economic development, offers effective tools for stimulating regional development, which increases employment, increases the competitiveness of regional production systems, increases budget revenues.
The benefits of creating a rural tourism cluster are that various entrepreneurs (associations of estates, representatives of the service sector, local craftsmen), state and local governments, and the public form associations that can effectively create and implement joint efforts by coordinating joint efforts. rural tourism product, which will result in comprehensive rural development through resource efficiency.
Therefore, in the process of creating a quality product of rural tourism in Ukraine, it is necessary to unite the efforts of representatives of different industries, which are related to one another.
The advantages of implementing a cluster model of rural tourism are: - rational use of local resources; - attraction of new internal and external investments; - increasing the competitiveness of enterprises and the region as a whole and increasing the volume of production of the local product; - expansion of interregional exchange; - Combining the efforts of public authorities, local self-government bodies, business structures and public organizations to develop rural tourism; - common use of human resources; - sharing of resources; - increasing the number of training programs for staff and improving their qualifications; - reduction of the cost of rural tourism services at the expense of preferences provided to the cluster participants; - coordination of business tactics and strategies; - development and implementation of joint marketing and advertising activities; - promotion of the tourist brand of your region; - participation in tourist fairs, exhibitions; - increasing the opportunities for innovative forms and directions of activity in the field of rural green tourism .
Therefore, the creation of clusters in the field of rural green tourism is one of the most important methods of innovative development of the tourism industry, a method of combining traditional and new forms of organization of rural tourism with deer tourism, and the method of reversing the natural potential of the region.
In general, national clusters of rural green tourism are already operating in Ukraine in a small number, but their increase has made it possible to increase the prospects of this type of tourism, its attractiveness, and also contributed to the creation of international tourism clusters, including rural green tourism.
An international cluster is a form of international economic cooperation, bringing together a group of independent business entities (small, medium and large enterprises of different ownership and institutional support), concentrated in the territories of two or more countries, acting to create a common competitive product through intensive interaction, sharing of resources, sharing of knowledge and experience, technology transfer and dissemination of information among the cluster members, which will ultimately facilitate the forgiveness of international competitiveness of member countries and their socio-economic development. These associations are the largest business structures and bring together companies in several countries. These can be economically developed countries as well as developing countries.
It is obvious that international clusters may in the near future become competitors of multinationals and multinationals, which have hitherto been regarded as key players in the global arena. To date, international clusters are actively cooperating with TNCs and BNCs and in the near future aim to absorb such structures. International business in the 21st century will have no nationality and will operate exclusively under the laws of the market and global competition.
At the present stage, rural green tourism remains a highly promising sector of tourism, is important for the economy of Ukraine, attracts not only domestic tourists, but also from many countries in the world, facilitates the establishment of foreign economic relations with different countries. Legislative regulation of relations in the field of rural green tourism, development of the main strategic directions of its development, provision of quality services will promote its popularization, attractiveness and capacity building.
The fulfilment of the tasks set for the regulation and development of rural green tourism will contribute to the qualitative development, organization and management of rural green tourism, as well as attracting investments in the tourism industry and economy of Ukraine.
The country has great geographical, human, natural - resource and cultural potential for the development of rural green tourism, which has an impact on the socio - economic development of the country. Their contribution to enhancing the socio - economic development of the state and tourism is possible through the regulation of the legislative base, the creation (merger) of clusters of rural green tourism, including international tourism clusters, the enhancement of the professional level of providing services of this type of tourism based on international experience of its development.
Reforming the economy, in particular the tourism industry through the unification of Ukrainian and foreign experience, opportunities and capital of rural green tourism will promote the national interests of Ukraine and will increase its tourist attractiveness, as well as the prospect of development of various new specialized types of tourism.
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