The Razgrad District Information Point was the host of a workshop-discussion with the stakeholders for assisting the process of public consultation and debate the purpose of which is the establishment of a common brand of the cross-border region "Romania-Bulgaria". The organising party, the Bulgarian Association for Alternative Tourism (BAAT) is a beneficiary under the project "Common Strategy for Sustainable Territorial Development of the Cross-Border Region "Romania-Bulgaria" financed within the scope of the Programme for Cross-Border Collaboration "Romania-Bulgaria 2007-2013" and co-financed by the EU through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
At the meeting which took place on 4 and 5 June took part representatives of the provincial and Municipal Administrations, the business community and supporting organisations, the Razgrad Regional Historical Museum and the Isperih Historical Museum, community centre activists from the Province and media. The event was moderated by Ms Keti Trencheva, a journalist at the Bulgarian National Radio.
The goals and the activities of projects were presented by its Head for BAAT, Mr Georgi Pamporov, the vice-chairperson of the MB of the Association. Socio- economic challenges faced by the Razgrad Province and its tourist product were marked by Mr Svetlin Simeonov, Chief Expert in the provincial administration. Mr Mihail Mihov from the Danube Competence Centre presented the tourist resources of the cross-border region (CBR) "Romania-Bulgaria" and SWOT analysis of its Bulgarian part. He indicated the strong sides of the CBR product, and the target markets and key tourism auditories for the region.
The activity, services and outcomes from the functioning of the network of 28 information points for popularisation of the EU Cohesion Policy in Bulgaria were presented by the manager of the Razgrad District Information Point, Mr Yuliyan Danailov. He declared the support for the implementation of the goals under the projects and expressed the DIP team's readiness to assist the stakeholders employed in the sphere of tourism at regional level, with up-to-date and timely information regarding opportunities for EU financing their project ideas.
In his presentations, the prominent expert in marketing science and lecturer at the University for National and World Economy, Professor Dr, Boyan Durankev demonstrated a great number of examples of what a brand is, or commercial network, a logo or a slogan as tools for shaping and recognition of products and services. He defined the Danube and the adjacent lands as a territory of good opportunities for marketing, communication and development of tourism. A lively discussion followed on the need of distinguishability of the cross-border region as a tourist destination. Those present shared their views and made proposals on the development of the region in the future pointing out that this is a unique area with its natural habitats and landmarks, diversity of plant and animal species and rich cultural and historic heritage. In addition, Professor Durankev presented some more good practices and positive examples of successful branding of destinations and services, which may serve to set up a common Regional brand of the CBR "Romania-Bulgaria".
Furthermore, the participants discussed the specific features, benefits and ideas for a brand of the cross-border region "Romania-Bulgaria". The preferred messages were formulated for a regional brand and some subsequent steps for the establishment thereof were mapped out.