|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on December 15, 2015 at 4:40 AM|
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF ETHIOPIA, located in Addis Ababa, is a perfect resource for palaeontology and prehistory, the museum being filled with incredible historical findings, Ethnography and modern art.
We must also mention that the museum is placed in Ethiopia, a country who was selected as WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015.
National Museum of Ethiopia: a most stop for every world tourist.
The collection at the national museum is as varied as it is large; visitors have the opportunity to see fossilised remains of early humans, regalia and other memorabilia from former Ethiopian rulers, traditional and ceremonial costumes, modern paintings and sculptures and pre-Axumite findings.
No other museum succeeded in making on the list of WORLD FAVORITE MUSEUMS in 2015, but ETHIOPIA NATIONAL MUSEUM form Addis Ababa made it.
On the arguments that put the Museum on the right track in the cultural world where the refurbishing of a new wing destined to conserve their countries priceless artifacts and cultural patrimony.
The judges did not escape the fact that: the museum received during 2015 landmarks visits like European Council delegations and United States delegations, a moment that was not achieved by any other cultural institution during this year.
Uniting Europe, America and Africa around Lucy-the skeleton of the first hominid, is a success that only Ethiopian National Museum registered, during 2015.
United States President Barack Obama made a visit to Lucy together with Ato Amin Abdulkadir - Minister of Tourism and Culture and ECTT President Dr. Anton Caragea meeting with Lucy-the oldes woman in the world joined also by Ato Amin Abdulkadir - Ethiopian Minister of Tourism and Culture.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF ETHIOPIA is the only world museum that received the visit of American and European delegations during the same year. All around Lucy-the first human skeleton.
On December 15, 2015, on the function of the official opening of the 2016 World Tourism, Culture and Travel Awards, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea announced the Ethiopian National Museum of Addis Ababa is recognized as a WORLD`S FAVORITE MUSEUM for his priceless artefacts and outstanding contribution to the human civilization understanding.
The Ethiopia National Museum made it on the list of WORLD`S FAVORITE MUSEUM on the account of garnering the most relevant artefacts of the incredible history of Ethiopia.
The Museum is having in his exhibitions an outstanding treasure of crowns and objects pertaining to the long list of emperors of Ethiopia, coronation artefacts, imperial insignia and memorabilia.
Selam-the body of the second most old hominide child-male.
The museum has also prided himself with impressive collections of weaponry, agricultural and everyday life objects from all the national groups and minorities from the territory of today Ethiopia, this makes it one of the largest ethnographic collection in the world and spawning for two millennia.
Of course, the crowning jewels of the permanent exhibitions at the Ethiopian National Museum are the outstandingly preserved bodies of Lucy and Salem (the oldest human remains in the world).
If Ethiopia is proudly named the “cradle of the civilisation” and “the place where it all begins” than a visit to the WORLD`S FAVORITE MUSEUM-the place where the forefathers of humanity are placed is a must for any human being.
In 2015 the Ethiopian National Museum received the visits of the United States delegates led by President Barack Obama, who praised the outstanding humanity’s legacy of Ethiopia and of the European Council on Tourism and Trade delegates led by President Anton Caragea.
This visits where a proof that: the Ethiopian National Museum has become a lynchpin of culture and a most see stop over for all the citizens of the world.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on August 31, 2015 at 11:50 AM|
During the European Council on Tourism and Trade (ECTT) official visit to Ethiopia, ECTT President, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea, met with Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, Foreign Minister, Tedos Ghebreyesus, State Minister, Berhane Gebre-Christos, Yaekob Yalla, Minister of Trade and Minister of Culture and Tourism, Amin Abdulkadir, to create a climate favorable for tourism and trade development and for awarding to the people and Government of Ethiopia, the world most important recognition for tourism advancement-WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION AWARD FOR 2015.
(Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 9-15 July 2015).
On the landmark occasion, of the universal proclamation of World Best Tourist Destination for 2015, a top ranking delegation from European Council on Tourism and Trade was invited for a discovery tour of Ethiopia, the receiver of this year most influential tourism designation.
We are WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION is the hymn of Ethiopia ! A perfect song for a perfect destination!
The visit took place between 9 to 15 July, 2015 and included an important political and diplomatic dimension, with European Council on Tourism and Trade President -Professor Dr. Anton Caragea holding discussions with Minister of Trade-Yaekob Yalla, Minister of Foreign Affairs-Berhane Gebre-Christos and H.E. Amin Abdulkadir – Minister of Culture and Tourism of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and an inclusive and profusely dialogue with Prime Minister of F.D.R. Ethiopia- Academician Hailemariam Desalegn.
Ethiopia tourism is having a perfect future ! with the hand shake between Prime Minister of Ethiopia-Hailemariam Desalegn and ECTT President-Professor dr. Anton Caragea.
The inclusive dialogue, concentrated on promoting bilateral trade, investment and economic cooperation, supporting business people and firms from both regions in cooperating and promoting the exchange of techniques, skills and economic goods.
Gala dinner for European Council on Tourism and Trade (ECTT) President and his high ranking delegation. (from right to left): Minister of Culture and Tourism – Amin Abdulkadir, H.E. Prime Minister – Academician Hailemariam Desalegn, H.E. ECTT President – Professor Dr. Anton Caragea , Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia-Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
On diplomatic arena a cooperation and further developing of honorary consul’s network across the world, was established, with a view to foster tourism, cultural and economic cooperation.
Creating a network of Ambassadors for Tourism and Culture, promoting tourism and the image of Ethiopia, where also tabled, based on other successful examples of actions of tourism promotion carved by European Council on Tourism and Trade.
During his official visit, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea met for an extensive dialogue Prime Minister Desalegn Hailemariam, who, on the occasion of WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION CEREMONY FOR 2015, was presented with the WORLD LEDERS OF TOURISM LETTER of European Council on Tourism and Trade, calling on Heads of States and Government to “promote peace and world development via the tourism sector”.
ECTT and Ethiopia have agreed to reinforce their collaboration in the areas of tourism promotion, management of tourism product development, and cultural marketing strategies, as agreed in the discussions between Professor Dr. Anton Caragea and the Minister of Tourism and Culture of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Mr. Amin Abdulkadir.
ETHIOPIA IS THE LAND CHOSEN BY GOD ! an WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015 proclaimed President Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
On July 10, 2015 European Council on Tourism and Trade President -Professor Dr. Anton Caragea had presented the World Best Tourist Destination for 2015 insignia to Prime Minister of Ethiopia- Academician Hailemariam Desalegn.
H.E. ECTT President – Professor Dr. Anton Caragea, Minister of Culture and Tourism – Amin Abdulkadir, H.E. Prime Minister – Academician Hailemariam Desalegn, are directing the proceedings for World Tourism Awards Ceremony for 2015.
European Tourism Academy Director- Academician Mircea Constantinescu, announced also that after receiving the letter destined to World Leaders of Tourism-Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn will represent Ethiopia, as the newest honorary members of European Tourism Academy.
Academician Mircea Constantinescu, Director of European Tourism Academy is presenting the Honorary Academician Title to Prime Minister of Ethiopia- Hailemariam Desalegn.
The ceremony for World Best Tourist Destination for 2015 included also folk dances, Ethiopian traditional coffee ceremony and academic presentations, supported by leading figures of Ethiopian cultural establishment.
H.E. Prime Minister and Academician Hailemariam Desalegn and European Council on Tourism and Trade President- Professor Dr. Anton Caragea in the center of Ethiopian government and European Council on Tourism and Trade visiting delegation.
The ceremony for World Best Tourist Destination in 2015 was live broadcasted and viewed by more than 200 millions viewers and will continued to be presented across Europe for the next year.
Axum Cathedral: the place of coronation for Emperors of Ethiopia. The last emperor to be crowned here was Haile Selassie I
From 10th July, the European Council on Tourism and Trade President and his delegation embarked in a cultural and tourism program visiting Axum-the first capital of Christian Africa and the centre of a world power in 100 to 400 BC that controlled trade across the Read Sea.
Anton Caragea-President of European Council on Tourism and Trade looking over Axum-the first capital of Ethiopian empire (300 a.Chr.)
In Axum, the delegation visit the royal tombs, the Church of the Arch of Covenant, the Saint Mary Imperial Basilica, where the emperors of Ethiopia were crowned.
Specially for European delegates, were opened the gates of the imperial museum, containing the priceless treasures of ten Ethiopian emperors from garments, to crown adorned with jewels and the robes used for imperial investiture.
From Axum, the old imperial city, the delegation led by President Anton Caragea has being directed to Gondar, the capital of Ethiopia from XVII century to XIX century.
Here they have a chance to admire the fiery Amharic dances, in a wonderful welcoming ceremony, offered by the local authorities, enjoyed the fabulous gondarine cuisine at famous Four sisters’ restaurant and toured the imperial city.
European Tourism delegation is touring the outstandingly preserved Imperial compound of Gondar- Ethiopian empire capital from 17 to 19 century. Behind is the the world famous Fasil Ghibli-Palace of Emperor Fasilides.
Gondar is also world renamed for his architecture and for housing almost ten emperors, in a period of glory for Abyssinia, as Ethiopia was known in that time.
Garnering Portuguese influence, with Indian and English architectural designs, Gondar is nicknamed as African Camelot for his strange, but perfect architecture.
Welcoming in Lalibela with flowers and the beautiful children of Ethiopia: Anton Caragea- European Tourism President and European Senator Ionel Agrigoroaei.
European Council on Tourism and Trade delegates were received with a religious ceremony in Lalibela, the holiest Christian city in Africa and the second Jerusalem, as in worldly known.
More than 5000 pilgrims, priests and deacons, welcomed President Dr. Anton Caragea and offered to him and his delegation, special ceremonial robes, to mark their entrance in the holy city.
European Tourism President-Dr. Anton Caragea addressing to priests, pilgrims and believers at Lalibela-the capital of Christian Africa.
On this occasion, President Anton Caragea held his gratitude speech known as: To The People of Lalibela, a discourse that quickly captured the imagination of the inhabitants of Lalibela.
An impressive tour of six of the eleven rock hewn churches was conducted, including the famous grave of Saint Lalibela, the church of Medhane Alem (Our Saviour) and Holy Cross Church.
Lalibela is a city greater than words, nothing can prepare you for his atmosphere and nothing can describe it!-President Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
In the final leg of the trip, European Council on Tourism and Trade President and his party were treated with a wonderful welcoming to the bustling and sunny south of Ethiopia and with his famous Lake District city of Hawassa.
The delegates were welcomed to music and a fire display by the head of Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Regional State of Ethiopia and enjoyed a tour of Lake Hawassa, a discovery of the city landmarks and a special night show that touched their hearts.
The Rift Valley Lakes of Ethiopia are an internal sea, that can be perfectly used for tourism and leisure.
A special surprised was offered by HE. Minister of Culture and Tourism of Ethiopia, Amin Abdulkadir, who arranged for ECTT President Dr. Anton Caragea delegation a special discovery tour of Harar-the fourth most holy Islamic site.
Mihai Prundianu, ECTT Trade Chairman pose for a photo in front of famous Harar landmark-Grand Jami Mosque.
The city comprises more than 82 mosques and 4000 saints tombs known in the Islamic world as Medinat Al Awliya- the city of saints and a UNESCO heritage site.
The delegates were welcomed with a coffee ceremony and a tour of famous city enclosure, known as Jugal, and a visit to famous French poet Arthur Rimbaud house in Harar.
The visit, to extraordinary city of Harar, was the perfect gift for our delegates, appreciated Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
The European delegation official visit to Ethiopia is a sign of the country inclusive development, political, clout and prominence in Africa and a mark of the country taking the rightful place that is deserved amidst the most cultural and historical developed country in the world, concluded his remarks, President Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
The Government of Ethiopia had succeeded in developing the country tourist infrastructure, in insuring security for tourism facilities and is proposing for the next year`s a number of strategic decisions to further develop the country’s tourism sector.
The Government of Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn is anticipating that tourism will become the main country foreign currency earner with the necessary investment in infrastructure, on destination promotion and product development, through the recently established Tourism Transformation Council.
Photo-Journal of EUROPEAN TOURISM ORGANIZATION-EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE TO ETHIOPIA-WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015.
Hawassa City of Diversity
Mrs. Almaz Beyero-Head of Bureau for Culture and Tourism of SNNPRS
Sidamo Cultural Tower
President Anton Caragea at Lalibela Airport
President Dr. Anton Caragea receives Fesil Gebil macheta from Mayor of Gondar-Mr. Getinet Amare
President Dr. Anton Caragea received by Mr. Muhyadin Ahmed-Head of Harari Regional Culture ,Heritage and Tourism Bureau
European Council on Tourism and Trade high ranking delegation at World Best Tourist Destination Ceremony
TELEVISION BROADCAST OF WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION CEREMONY FOR 2015
Supplementary PR information and photos can be accessed here:
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on August 2, 2015 at 4:30 PM|
Kazakhstan Ambassador meet with European Council on Tourism and Trade President(ECTT), Professor Dr. Anton Caragea for an official presentation of the 100 steps reform plan of Kazakhstan President.
The Ambassador outlined the significance and the importance of the message in a dialogue with ECTT President-Professor Dr. Anton Caragea and requested the academic analyses and an official point of view on the content of the document, that will be submitted for Kazakhstan people appreciation.
The document titled: 100 concrete steps set out by President Nursultan Nazarbayev to implement five institutional reforms is a concrete plan, proved the Kazakhstan President determination to carve out the creation of a developed state for all people of Kazakhstan.
Kazakhstan Ambassador Daulet Batrashev and ECTT President- Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
This will be achieved by developing a professional civil service, ensuring rule of law, offering bases for industrialisation and economic growth and fostering national unity and identity by developing a patriotic act named Mangilik El (Eternal Nation).
After perusing the document,ECTT President-Professor Dr. Anton Caragea express his complete acquiescence to the program enunciated by H.E. Kazakhstan President-Nursultan Nazarbayev and highlighted the main features of what he called „a perfect program for a modern nation, a state belonging to XXI century”.
The academic staff of European Tourism Academy and European Council on Tourism and Trade, in agreement with other institutions and European academies, will start a process of complete and thoroughly examination and recommendations, so that the Five Institutional Reforms Program outlined by President Nursultan Nazarbayev to be recognized as a document of universal value and significance and to be offered as a template for development and national building across the world.
The program and documents, submitted by H.E. Kazakhstan Ambassador-Daulet Batrashev for Europe and world analysis, are reflecting the peerless manner in which President Nazarbayev is conducting the construction of an enlighten and modern state in Kazakhstan of today and his proposals can be considered as a document of world significance and authoritative development plan, concluded Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
European Council on Tourism and Trade work will be connected with the implementation of the concept of development of the tourist industry by 2020 and establishment of regional tourist clusters: “Astana - the Heart of Eurasia”, “Almaty - Kazakhstan’s Free Cultural Zone”, “Unity of Nature and Nomadic Culture”, “The Pearl of Altai”, “Restoration of the Great Silk Road”, “the Caspian Gates”.
The meeting held between HE. Kazakhstan Ambassador-Daulet Batrashev and President-Professor Dr. Anton Caragea was the first official presentation of the Five Institutional Reforms Program of President Nursultan Nazarbayev to a world academic body.
The implementation of a number of technological projects is envisaged with European Council on Tourism and Trade expertise and support.
This include the creation of the large-scale internet project “Encyclopedia of Kazakhstan”, with European Tourism Academy high level competencies involved which will enable citizens and foreign tourists to discover more about the country. The portal will include 3D video tours of Kazakhstan, information on history and culture of the country, as well as interesting events.
The portal will act as Kazakhstan’s “business card”, as well as a national guide, a national wall of fame of citizens and a platform for online discussion on the model of European Journal of Tourism and Trade.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on August 1, 2015 at 2:10 PM|
On the occasion of Addis Ababa Ceremony for WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015, the European Council on Tourism and Trade President – Professor dr. Anton Caragea, had presented the principal speech outlining the reasons behind naming Ethiopia as the receiver of the world most prestigious tourism award.
Here is the full text of the Council President:
H.E. Professor Dr. Anton Caragea proclaimes ETHIOPIA-WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION IN 2015.
We have all gathered here, on the venue of WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION CEREMONY to celebrate one of humanity most important achievements in the last centuries: and this is undoubtedly tourism.
Tourism had become, from just a tool for enjoyment and ludic preoccupation, a major part of human life.
Tourism is today an intricate part of our life, the need to share experiences, to search for unknown territories, to go further and further.
Tourism is inscribed in our fiber and it defines us, it make us human.
Tourism is now a major economic factor that helps countries to be developed and enrich themselves in more than just the economic point of view.
Countries and people’s are rediscovering themselves by tourism.
Cultures are resurrected, history is brought to life and people are enjoying new opportunities via tourism development.
An ambassador was considered, a few centuries ago, as a tourist entrusted with gathering knowledge and information’s about distant lands and in offering the image of his country to other people.
Today, in XXI century, all tourists are diplomats, building bridges of information, understanding and cooperation by simple experience of travel.
Presiding over WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015: (from left to right): European Council on Tourism and Trade President-Professor dr. Anton Caragea, Prime Minister of Ethiopia-Academician Hailemariam Desalegn, Minister of Culture and Tourism of Ethiopia-Amin Abdulkadir.
In this new world, where tourism is economy, is diplomacy and is shaping people’s and nations destiny, there is no more important moment as the moment when world tourism is choosing his World Best Tourist Destination.
In some years our choice is driven by consumerist arguments, and this is normal as tourism is after all a major economic factor, but some time our decision must lead the way for tourists to discover and rediscover new lands and new cultures and must be a signal of re-emphasizing the need to put history, patrimony, cultural legacy at the fore of our decision.
European Council on Tourism President looking over the ancient city of Axum.
We must never forget the fact that: the main duty of tourism is to enrich the soul and capture the imagination of traveler.
This is the rationale, the driving force, underlined by our decision to hail Ethiopia as the World Best Tourist Destination for 2015.
Tourists that will select, in this year and in the years to come, Ethiopia as their pristine destination, will have the chance of immersing themselves in the land from where humanity once sprinkled.
Here is where our grandmother to all, started her journey, almost 4 million years ago.
Her name was Lucy-Dinkenesh -she is wonderful (in translation)- as is the tender Ethiopian name .
Here, in Ethiopia, tourists can reconnect with God, as both the Kingdom of Axum and his later hair-Lalibela made a point of honor in creating the Christianity cradle of Africa.
Here you can see God powerful deeds by the presence and ingenuity of Ethiopian people as in the stoned carved churches of Lalibela.
The legend goes that the angels themselves help the people build them and tourist with see that these angels still have a name and a face, in the faces of people of Ethiopia.
European Council on Tourism and Trade President-Professor Dr. Anton Caragea is presenting the allocution: ETHIOPIA-THE LAND CHOSEN BY GOD!-World Best Tourist Destination for 2015.
The legacy of Muslim creeds can also be found in the Sheik Hussein Religious, Cultural and Historical Site and many others holy sites in Harar.
All this is making Ethiopia the ideal destination for people’s searching their connection with God, in quest for their peace of mind and soul or maybe just the beauty of religious artifacts.
Dr. Anton Caragea ECTT President addressing the peoples of Lalibela-The center of african christianity.
Should I just recall that: this is the unique place where you can go in search of the Arch of the Covenant, as a modern Indiana Jones or just as a traveler searching for spiritual adventures?
Because thus is Ethiopia today: a spiritual adventure, a discovery trip that must not be overlooked and that is richly deserving the appellative of World Best Tourist Destination.
I will not linger too much on detailed description of all the UNESCO heritage sites existing in Ethiopia or on the long list of region and cities awaiting their inscription on world heritage list.
I will just emphasize how rare is a country offering such a diversity of cultural, historical and natural beauties as Ethiopia.
Here in Ethiopia you can find the cradle of humanity, cradle of religions, cradle of culture and why not? Cradle of agriculture.
We must not forget that thirty-six of world crops are originating from Ethiopia as their starting point in our food.
Let just imagine a world without coffee. I know is difficult, but without Ethiopia the long way of coffee would have not existed.
Ethiopia is not a distant place, you can discover it in any cup of cafe, in any taste of wheat or barley, they all must whisper to you: come to Ethiopia, come to where humanity started, come home !
Yes, in our decision to crown the jewel of Africa-Ethiopia as World Best Tourist Destination we did not forget for a moment that we are not encouraging people to go in a far or distant place.
No! We are just telling them to come home, to rediscover their roots, their house-Ethiopia.
We must also mark down Ethiopia as an example for tourism revenues distribution and to encourage tourist, travelers or just prospective tourists to invest in local artisans creations.
Tourism revenues are helping communities to develop, are helping people restarting their lives, protecting cultural landscape and historical legacy.
Coming as a tourist in Ethiopia is not just a self rewarding adventure, but is also an opportunity to make a responsible tourism, a fair trade tourism, supporting local communities and poor rural areas.
It is a perfect example of social tourism, that we must command and support and specially promote.
We are hailing Ethiopia also a Favorite Cultural Destination for 2015 and with good measure also, as we just inscribed as intangible cultural and tourism patrimony heritage the Ethiopian coffee ceremony and shimgalina-the specific Ethiopian concept of learning and amicability.
The coffee ceremony is not only celebrating the first coffee planted and presented to the world by Ethiopian people, but is also a ceremony destined to showcase the hospitality, the traditions, the desire to offer the best to travelers and passerby alike.
In this ceremony, we can observe the people character and way of treating with dignity and care their guests.
I must also remark another component of intangible cultural and tourism patrimony heritage of Ethiopia- the concept of shimgalina, offering another mark of inter-community dialogue and acceptance, of tolerance and friendship, that explains in full how Ethiopia can unite people’s, can give them the sense of historical unity and bind them together in love.
This concept is also a fundament of Ethiopian history and development, a secret to ingratiate in a polite and correct manner, that makes tourist feel at home in this wonderful country.
As Ethiopia is in itself a succinct compendium of humanity history and traditions, I could go one for hours, underlining the many reasons why crowning Ethiopia today as World Best Tourist Destination it is just a normal act of recognition.
The recognition of a country so rich in culture and promises for tomorrow, a nation that it becomes the embodiment of the tourism for the future, of the tourism for knowledge and experiences, of tourism that is leaving us richer in conscience and soul.
The story of Ethiopia continues and is writing today a new and remarkable page: the page of tourism and cultural success, the page of Ethiopia as WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015.
Dinner honoring WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015: (from left to right): Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, European Council on Tourism and Trade President-Professor dr. Anton Caragea, Prime Minister of Ethiopia-Academician Hailemariam Desalegn, Minister of Culture and Tourism of Ethiopia-Amin Abdulkadir.
Your Excellency Mr. Prime Minister and European academician-Hailemariam Desalegn,
It is my great honor and privilege to hand over this title as an international recognition for all the people of Ethiopia, all united in the service of protecting and preserving historical and civilization patrimony of your country, in fostering tourism and culture, in the service of the people of ETHIOPIA.
As I often say and hope, that this title must be regarded as a challenge, as from now on we are expecting your country and people exertions in the benefit of the world culture and tourism.
I hope that: this lofty rostrum will be transformed in a support for developing the international recognition of FEDERAL DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF ETHIOPIA, for a social oriented tourism and development and in a base for further success for THE LAND CHOSEN BY GOD himself – ETHIOPIA.
It is my privilege to handover to Your Excellency, as the most representative leader of people and tourism of FEDERAL DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF ETHIOPIA the award for WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2015.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on July 31, 2015 at 4:20 AM|
On 10th July 2015, in an official ceremony, Academician Mircea Constantinescu-Director of European Tourism Academy, had presented H.E. Prime Minister of Ethiopia-Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn with the insignia of honor and the certificate of honorary member of the academy.
In recognition of his contribution to the development of Ethiopian tourism, we are proud to hand over The Medal Of Honor to his Excellency Hailemariam, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and to recognize him as the newest academician member of the European Tourism Academy. this is the way in which Academician Mircea Constantinescu announced the acceptance of the newest meber of European Academy.
H.E. Prime Minister of Ethiopia-Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn presented with the insignia of honor and the certificate of honorary member of the academy.
The decision was taken on 25 June 2015 by the Academic Board of European Council on Tourism and Trade and announced in an official letter as a result of: Government of Ethiopia recognizing the importance of tourism as a key facilitator for the country development and international promotion, creating exemplary structures like Tourism Transformation Council, investing in infrastructure and capacity building, creating a special team under Your Excellency leadership for destination promotion and management and protecting the cultural, natural and historical patrimony of the country.
The full text of the admission in an academic institution is called laudation (from latin word-presentation) and we have the pleasure of presenting you with the text of laudation by Academician Mircea Constantinescu for H.E. Hailemariam Desalegn-Prime Minister of F.D.R of Ethiopia.
Mr. Prime Minister,
Your Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,
We are here to award to H.E. Hailemariam Desalegn, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia the title of Honorary Member of European Tourism Academy.
Analyzing the curriculum vitae along with the activity of the Prime Minister Hailemariam we discover a complex person, a man of many talents, entirely dedicated to the development of his country, to the well being of the people of Ethiopia, dedicated to building a favorable image of Ethiopia in the midst of the international community.
His bachelor's degree in civil engineering, from Addis Ababa University, was fundamental for building a solid scientific education, giving him access to a high level knowledge and expertise.
The master degree, with Tampere University of Technology in Finland, gave him an European and international perspective upon the transfer of knowledge, expertise and technology.
Upon his return to Ethiopia, he served in different academic and administrative capacities, including the dean of the Water Technology Institute, for 13 years.
H.E. Hailemariam Desalegn loves his country and the people of Ethiopia. He learned how important the water resources are for a country, how important the expert management of such a vital resource is for the well being and the successful development of Ethiopia.
But for him it was not enough. He wanted more…He wanted to acquire knowledge of scientific management of the country, of its human resources and natural resources as well.
And he acquired all this, earning a MA in Organizational Leadership in California, from the best…
Academician Mircea Constantinescu, Minister of Culture and Tourism-Amin Abdulkadir,President Dr. Anton Caragea and European Senator Ionel Agrigoroaei proudly presents ETHIOPIA-WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION logo
We will not analyze here the political activity of H.E., but taking actively part in the political life of his country, it gave him the opportunity to work with people of Ethiopia, to be in the middle of Ethiopia’s people, to efficiently communicate, and being able to implement at the high level management of the country activities, reflecting the reality of Ethiopia and the wishes of Ethiopian people.
His activity as Minister of Foreign Affairs was indeed a success. As a diplomat he presented to the world the image of a peaceful country, of many resources and beauties, with people that praise hospitality, open in a friendly manner to the international community.
There is no wonder that with all these credentials His Execellency was able to excellently perform as Prime Minister, running an activity at the top level, for the benefit of Ethiopia and Ethiopian people.
In the country’s general framework, tourism is a complex activity, and His Execellency understood that tourism is not only for tourists to enjoy the natural beauties and the cultural heritage of Ethiopia. Tourism is for also the people of Ethiopia, is for the development of the local communities, so that everyone will be able to enjoy all that a beautiful and resourceful country may offer.
As a final remark, His Execellency is working for many years at the highest level of the African Union, was able to have a general overview, as well as a personal contribution, to the most important African institution, bringing together people and countries, managing the trend for ever growing development and international recognition of the African continent.
In recognition of his contribution to the development of Ethiopian tourism, we are proud to hand over The Medal Of Honor to his Excellency Hailemariam, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and to recognize him as the newest academician member of the European Tourism Academy.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on July 4, 2015 at 2:25 PM|
The Office of the President of European Council on Tourism and Trade announced that H.E. Prime Minister of Ethiopia Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn has being consecrated as a WORLD LEADER OF TOURISM and as a member of European Tourism Academy for his “recognition of the role and significance of tourism on world stage”.
Here is the integral message addressed by H.E. Professor Dr. Anton Caragea-ECTT President and Academician Mircea Constantinescu in congratulation for Ethiopia`s tourism achievments.
H.E. Professor Dr. Anton Caragea-ECTT President presenting WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION IN 2015 designation for ETHIOPIA.
We have the pleasure of informing you that: in unanimity, the Academic Board of the European Council on Tourism and Trade (ECTT) has elected you as a honorary member of EUROPEAN TOURISM ACADEMY, in your capacity as a WORLD LEADER OF TOURISM for your recognition of the role and significance of tourism on world stage.
In XXI century Tourism had become more than an industry, more than an integral part of the life of billions of people, tourism had become an intricate part of the countries international image, had become a part of diplomatic life and a public opinion key factor.
Tourism, Travel, Trade and Investments are interconnected and are uniting today`s countries, not only in a globalized world and unified market, but are making every person in the world to have two countries: the one of his birth and the one of his choose.
The world recognizes that Trade, Travel and Tourism are part of the international life and each and every one of our citizens became a world ambassador and a central actor on world stage.
No country, interested in development, international recognition, economic growth and a prosperous life for his citizens, can remove herself from the international tourism and trade arena.
Trade and Tourism are the key pillars for countries and billions of people, worldwide, in their efforts to achieve fully their live potential.
General Assembly of European Council on Tourism and Trade selects ETHIOPIA as winner of FAVORITE CULTURAL DESTINATION and World Best Tourist Destination in 2015.
EuropeanCouncil on Tourism and Trade, as a driving force in the international promotion of tourism as a tool for development and international cooperation, is selecting the world leaders to become a part of his structure and to raise a unified voice and position on the global tourism agenda.
Today, the Government of Ethiopia is recognizing the importance of tourism as a key facilitator for the country development and international promotion, creating exemplary structures like Tourism Transformation Council, investing in infrastructure and capacity building, creating a special team under Your Excellency leadership for destination promotion and management and protecting the cultural, natural and historical patrimony of the country.
The world leaders that are offering such a special attention to historical patrimony of their country and use it, and preserve it for the benefit of the future generation, who grasp the importance of tourism as the most important part of diplomacy, international relations and raising national profile on world arena, must be supported and commanded and offered as a general example.
Your Excellency stated that your “aims are to build on Ethiopia’s natural, historical and cultural resources to strengthen the tourism sector, identify pressing value-chain gaps and intervening to allay these gaps based on tangible and scientific studies jointly with the private sector and the international tourism community.
Together, we will work hand in hand to make tourism one of the leading economic sectors of our country and Ethiopia a top destination in Africa”
This statement and practical measures put in place, made your country succeeding in the 2015- WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION AWARD competition and be accepted as FAVORITE CULTURAL DESTINATION for your rich past and cultural prowess.
This is a momentous achievement for ETHIOPIA that is due to your exertions.
H.E. Prime Minister of Ethiopia Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn has being consecrated as a WORLD LEADER OF TOURISM and as a member of European Tourism Academy.
In your new capacity, as the representative of ETHIOPIA on world tourism and on international cultural stage, we hope that the World will benefit now from your public exertions and support in creating a new world community based on peace, development and tourism as the pillars of international cooperation.
Prof. Dr. Anton Caragea, MA, FINS, ETA
Academician Mircea Constantinescu PhD, Phil Dr.
For the photo-chronicle of the General Assembly of European Council on Tourism and Trade go here.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on May 5, 2015 at 1:00 PM|
Warm welcoming for European Tourism Organization-European Council on Tourism and Trade at Khoja Ahmed Yasawi Monument-Turkestan
In a press statment for Kazakhstan national television-Khabar, in the concluding moments of the SILK ROAD TOUR, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea - European Council on Tourism and Trade leader stated that: European and Kazakhstan, shoulder to shoulder in tourism promotion, can develop and give a world resonance to the Silk Road Program for XXI Century, was the opinion of -Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
Silk Road has always being the destination of choice for luxury and culture oriented tourists and a fabulous journey thru time and spaces.
Between 20 to 29 April 2015 a European Council on Tourism and Trade (ECTT) high level mission has toured Kazakhstan, in order to help transforming the heart of Central Asia, as Kazakhstan is better known, in the new Frontier of Silk Road experiences.
ECTT President Anton Caragea recieves the SHYMKENT STAR from Akim of Shymkent-Darkhan Satybaldy
European Council on Tourism and Trade is the promoter of Silk Road concept in Europe and the world, with an accent on presenting the historical and tourist potential of Silk Road nations of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan.
The ECTT President and his tourism and diplomatic delegation had start the Silk Road discovery tour in Almaty, the city of apples as is world renowned, the candidate city for World Winter Olympics in 2022.
The delegation had being presented by the Governor of the region (Akim) with an overview of the city developments plans and touristic opportunities.
A rich cultural program was carved for European delegation benefit with sightseeing including: State Museum of History, Almaty Art Gallery, city landmarks and a tour of winter sports facilities of Medeu and Shymbulak.
The local and international mass media has covered every step of ECTT tour oon Silk Road
In an interview with Khabar Television, President-Professor Dr. Anton Caragea praised Almaty development as the perfect gate for tourists wanting to enjoy the rich culture of Kazakhstan and to basket on perfect tourism facilities offered by city hotels.
The tour continued into the province of Chimkent (Shymkent), where the delegation visited the historical landmarks, holds constructive dialogues with provincial governors and inspected tourist facilities of the area.
European Council on Tourism and Trade is visiting the splendors of Kazakhstan (from left to right): Khoja Ahmed Yasawi Monument ( from XIV century) in Turkestan
ECTT familiarization trip to Aisha Bibi monument-Aisha Bibi Monument ( from XIII century) in Taraz
Cathedral of Our Saviour in Almaty (XIX century)visited by European President
The highlight of the visit was the on-site discovery tour of incredible city of Turkistan (24-26 April) with the world famous Khoja Ahmed Yasawi Mausoleum, Friday Mosque, Otrar ancient city archeological site, the splendid Aristan Bab Mosque, and participation in a special ceremony honoring one of Kazakhstan spiritual fathers (Aristan Bab) and Baba Ragham Mosque.
Professor Dr. Anton Caragea highly praised in a Television interview Turkistan incredible mixture of culture, tradition, historical patrimony and perfect tourism potential.
Aristan Bab monument from XIV century, an architectural landmark and religious lynchpin in Kazakhstan
Turkistan is incredible, is vast and rich in everything that a cultural program can offer to you and is well preserved.
The tourists should flock to this place, as this is the main stop over on Silk Road and Turkistan monuments had served as templates for all later Silk Road construction.
One cannot say: I visited Silk Road, without spending quality time in Turkistan, concluded President Caragea.
European Council on Tourism and Trade President on the Silk Road-Taraz
The European tourism body-ECTT tour experience concluded in Almaty, with a press conference, highlighting the importance of European-Kazakhstan tourism cooperation and opportunities for Kazakhstan to join European Council on Tourism and Trade.
European Council on Tourism and Trade delegation at the gates of Turkestan
Kazakhstan had embarked in a huge promotion campaign on world tourism stage, in preparation of World Expo 2017 to be held in Astana, and Silk Road program developed with European Council on Tourism and Trade can be extremely beneficial for the country tourist potential, suggested the European Tourism Academy Director-Mircea Constantinescu.
This is even more relevant, as European Council on Tourism and Trade support was instrumental in Astana successful bid for World Expo 2017 and today this cooperation is continuing and enriching in perspective.
European and Kazakhstan, shoulder to shoulder in tourism promotion, can develop and give a world resonance to the Silk Road Program for XXI Century, was the opinion of European Council on Tourism and Trade leader-Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on April 21, 2015 at 4:55 AM|
European Council on Tourism and Trade high level delegation opens his visit on SILK ROAD with a three -day stop over in Almaty, on Monday April 20, 2015, to observe the potential role of the city as the starting point of SILK ROAD touring program.
It is worth mentioning that Almaty is also a strong candidate for World Winter Olympics of 2022.
Almaty-the starting point of ECTT Silk Road visit in Kazakhstan
The visit is part of a larger tour to assess the region role in international tourism and the chances to revive a Silk Road of tourism in XXI century with the support of European Council on Tourism and Trade prowess.
Almaty, known as the gate to the ancient Silk Road and crossroad between Europe and Asia, is competing against Beijing in a race that was reduced to two candidates after the withdrawal of four bidders because of financial and political concerns.
Tien Shan mountain ridge towering over Almaty-the perfect winter sports place
The 5-member ECTT promotion commission, chaired by ECTT President Anton Caragea, will visit the proposed sports venues and meet with Kazakhstan government leaders to discuss their plans and promotion strategies in case of wining the bid.
European Council on Tourism and Trade has a long track record of promoting international candidature on a world level.
During last year`s European Council on Tourism and Trade has successfully supported Dubai as candidate city for World Expo 2020,Astana as host of World Expo 2017, both, candidatures crowned with clear successes.
We have to asses the growing demand for winter sport infrastructure in the region, but also the significance and relevance for the host city and region, and country of hosting winter games and sporting events, President Dr. Anton Caragea said.
Almaty must be marketed as a clean, open, friendly city, with sophisticated touristic and sport infrastructure, with incredible landscape and powerful history, offering true winter conditions and plenty of real – not man-made – snow.
Almaty city is presenting the most compact bid in three decades, with all venues within a 30-kilometer (18-mile) radius of the Olympic Village.
Almaty has a projected a budget of $1.859 billion and an adjacent infrastructure budget of $1.636 billion.
It will be a pleasure for us to measure the developments of Almaty, a city that is capital for the region future and development, that is marked as the open gate towards Silk Road and that have a pivotal role for tourism in Central Asia, stated Professor Dr. Anton Caragea-ECTT President
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on April 21, 2015 at 4:50 AM|
SILK ROAD project is getting a major supporter in the presence of Professor Dr. Anton Caragea-European Council on Tourism and Trade President and his delegation in a tour around the ancient road of civilization and trade.
The discovery tour and familiarization trip by European Council on Tourism and Trade high level delegation will concentrate on the SILK ROAD in XXI century on the territory of Kazakhstan.
The European Council on Tourism and Trade visit will start on Almaty-the father of apples city
The familiarization trip of European Council on Tourism and Trade will start on the Mountain of Tien Shian slopes where Almaty, former capital of Kazakhstan is bidding for hosting the Olympics Games.
Almaty can become the starting point of a shorter version of Silk Road offering a venue for visiting Taraz, a cultural center connected with Central Asian folklore and the legend of Aisha Bibi and perfect equipped center for visits to the natural reserves of the area: Zhungar gates, Taskarkum, Ili delta, Balkhash, lltyn Emel National Park, Koksu Valley and Khan Tengri.
Kazakhstan has constructed a perfect infrastructure for tourists to exploit the Silk Road in comfort.
Another stopover for European Council on Tourism and Trade will be the modern city of Chimkent, that can offer to tourist the modern facilities and help them to discover the magic lands of Otrar, Sayram 9the 11 century center of Nestorians faith and the mausoleum and mosque of Aristan Bab.
Aristan Bab Mousoleum- a must see in Silk Road
The delegation will be hosted for two days in the center of culture and art of Silk Road: Turkistan, home of majestic monuments like Hogea Ahmed Yasawi listed as an UNESCO World Heritage site and Friday Mosque on Kul Tobe hill and the perfect art monument of Rabiga Sultan Begim mausoleum.
Kyzylorda a city of history and leissure: beaches on the river banks
The familiarization trip will continue towards Sauran-the former capital of White Horde and will be finalized on the ancient wall city of Kyzylorda, on the legendary banks of Syr Daria River.
The ten days familiarization trip of European Council on Tourism and Trade will be the main event in promoting the Silk Road program in 2015 and in offering limelight to the region and the necessary imagistic support for the development of tourism in South Kazakhstan.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on March 25, 2015 at 6:55 AM|
European Council on Tourism and Trade is dedicated to support and promote the European traditions and to popularize the European products and craftsmanship across the world.
European wines are a symbol of european long history and tradition and as such an integral part of the mission of European Council on Tourism and Trade promotion activities.
In order to promote and protect the winemaking legacy of Europe, two times a year, ECTT is organizing an International Wine and Tourism Fair.
The first of this year events was held beginning with 21 March 2015 at the Romexpo Hall in Bucharest.
On this occasion, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea-President of European Council on Tourism and Trade, accompanied by a delegation of parliamentarians and diplomats had opened the Venue and visited the stand of CASA DE VINURI COTNARI (COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE) the creator of EUROPEAN DIPLOMATIC WINE for 2015.
COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE had presented, on the opening of International Wine Fair GoodWine, a selection of the best wines of 2015: the BUSUIOACA DE BOHOTIN (Bohotin Basilicum)-COLLOQUIUM IN PARIS wine, who conquered the public with his pungent aroma, fine pearled image and the apple and fruity dominated taste a wine nearing perfection and marked with 98 points out of 100 for the flowery flavor.
The wine presentation continued with another star of COTNARI-DIPLOMATIC WINE: the Rose Wine from Dominium (Domenii) series of COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE and the Black Girly (Feteasca Neagra) from Dominium, launched in the spring of 2014.
Was presented also a wine preferred by European tasters: the special Fat Lady of Cotnari (Grasa de Cotnari) a wine that conquered all hearts by his long-lasting aroma, fine taste and technological mastery.
Awarding the WINEMAKER OF THE YEAR AWARD FOR 2014 to Mr. George Malutan, oenology expert of HOUSE OF WINE-COTNARI. From left to right: H.E. Mrs. and Mr. Daulet Batrashev-Ambassador of Kazakhstan, President of European Council on Tourism and Trade-Professor Dr. Anton Caragea, Mr. George Malutan-Cotnari wine expert, H.E. Korean Ambassador-Ri Kwang Il
The BUSUIOACA DE BOHOTIN (Bohotin Basilicum)-by COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE was undoubtedly the Queen of the festivity.
The international recognitions had poured on the BUSUIOACA DE BOHOTIN: noted as the perfect European Wine in December 2014 and voted by the diplomatic committee in December 2014 at Good Wine, as the BEST EUROPEAN WINE in 2015, it catches the eyes of all the visitors and lovers of good wine.
THE COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE had presented also the celebrated national wine assortment: Feteasca Neagra in two separate editions.
One, under the brand of Domains (Domenii) and a special and unique surprise the presentation of the new FETEASCA NEAGRA of 2014 both united by a perfect mastery of the tannins, a perfect maturity potential that is promising a good evolution in the bottle and will offer full enjoyment to the consumers for many years to come.
The guests present on the venue, crowded to taste the Busuiaca de Bohotin-THE BEST EUROPEAN WINE FOR 2015, and awarded by The European Council on Tourism and Trade with the title of European Diplomatic Wine, the European representation wine.
Concluding the tour of the COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE-the creator of the EUROPEAN DIPLOMATIC WINE FOR 2015, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea ask the honored guest present at the venue: H.E. Ambassador of Kazakhstan Batrashev Daulet and H.E. Ambassador of Korea-Ri Kwang Il and parliamentarians to be witness at the presentation of the WINEMAKER FOR 2014 title for Mr. George Malutan-the oenology expert of CASA DE VINURI COTNARI (COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE) for his Feteasca Neagra wine creation.
A happy wine creator- Mr. George Malutan-THE WINEMAKER OF THE YEAR: the Feteasca Neagra creation of Cotnari Wineyard was selected by the jury
Presenting his assessment on the International Wine Fair GoodWine March 2015, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea- President of European Council on Tourism and Trade stated that the event has proved the ever-growing level of European wine industry and of Romanian wine producers, perfect represented by the COTNARI HOUSE OF WINE- the creator of European Diplomatic Wine.
|Posted by EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE on March 18, 2015 at 5:35 AM|
On March 18, 2015 will be celebrated for the second time, across the world, the International Day of World Protected Areas and National Parks.
After being held for the first time last year at the indications of European Council on Tourism and Trade Last, efforts are made to proclaim it as the International Day at the 70th General Assembly of United Nations (UN).
In 2014 the day was dedicated to the efforts in tourism and environmental protection of Peoples Democratic Republic of Laos and in 2015 the model of tourism and protection of national parks of Zimbabwe will be highlighted.
The Day of 18 March is to be marked every year to underline the importance of world protected areas and natural parks in the conservation of bio-diversity, in promoting environmental protection and awareness and avoiding economic exploitation and depletion of this areas.
H.E. ECTT President in the middle surrounded by Ambassadors of United Arab Emirates(left)-Yacoub Yousef al Hosani and Kazakhstan Ambassador-Talgat Kaliyev (right) in 2013
According to the decision from 18 March 2013 of European Council on Tourism and Trade President Office, each year on 18 March, the world will celebrate world protected areas and natural parks and will raise awareness of the importance of every country establishing such areas and register them in a word data base and to control the economic activities in this areas and also support and promote tourism in this areas as a powerful economic promotion tool.
The decision decree of European Council on Tourism and Trade President, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea remarks the fact that: 18 March is a day of action, for the establishment and protection of world natural areas, for the promotion of bio-diversity, as a powerful promotion tool for tourism activities.
Also is worth considering that according to the executive order, all the tourism prizes and recognition offered by European Tourism Organization will have to incorporate the respect for world protected areas and natural parks.
The country celebrated today across Europe is the Republic of Zimbabwe, the receiver of WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION AWARD for 2014.
Zimbabwe had actively tackled the issue of natural areas protection and the title was regarded as an encouragement for continuing actions on the field of world natural protected areas.
The 2015 recipient of WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION will also have to endeavor to promote bio-diversity protection or to support the establishment of natural protected areas and parks, as a tool for protecting nature and supporting sustainable development stated Professor Dr. Anton Caragea.
The event held on 18 March 2015, had united under the title of International Day of World Protected Areas and National Parks more than 26 ambassadors and diplomatic envoys to the headquarter of European Council on Tourism and Trade.
The event contained a speech by Professor Dr. Anton Caragea, ECTT President reflecting the importance of world protected areas and natural parks, the screening of a movie regarding ZIMBABWE- WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2014 achievements on the field of natural conservation.
Other allocutions where held by Academician Mircea Constantinescu, European MP`s: Steliana Miron, Ionita Dan, Marcel Dumitru Bujor etc. and by presentations of the environmental situation in their country held by the ambassadors of Morocco, Malaysia, Macedonia and Cyprus etc.
The second world celebration of International Day of World Protected Areas and National Parks, inspired by Professor Dr. Anton Caragea-Goodwill Ambassador for World Protected Areas and National Parks was dedicated to attract the world attention to the issue of establishing and protecting natural areas and parks for the benefit of future generation and as an intricate part in sustainable development and in tourism development.
In the concluding part of the meeting a congratulatory message was adopted to President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, the receiver of WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION AWARD IN 2014 and the President of African Union urging further cooperation on tourism and environmental issues.