The sixth edition of the Adriatic Sea Forum 2023 will be held in Dubrovnik, Croatia
The Adriatic Sea Forum will feature the first Summit of Adriatic Port Presidents as part of its opening day in Dubrovnik, Croatia, on 4 May 2023.
The summit will be a private gathering of top officials from ports and national trade associations, who will discuss issues such as cruise and ferry traffic growth, sea passenger handling optimisation, and the reduction of environmental impacts.
Risposte Turismo, the company that conceived and organises the Adriatic Sea Forum, is collaborating on the event with both the Italian Ports Association and the Dubrovnik Port Authority. The first meeting will lead up to the signing of a declaration of intent on future initiatives and activities that can be implemented in the ports around the Adriatic Sea.
The summit will feature a panel discussion on the present and future of sea tourism in the area, including contributions by the presidents of the Rijeka Port Authority, the Zadar Port Authority, the North Adriatic Sea Port System Authority, the Split Port Authority, the Dubrovnik Port Authority, the Italian Ports Association, the Croatian Association of Port Authorities, the Southern Adriatic Ports Authority, the Central Adriatic Sea Port Authority, the Eastern Adriatic Sea Ports Authority, the Sibenik Port Authority, and the Ploče Port Authority.
“It is a source of great pride and satisfaction for Risposte Turismo to have contributed to the conception of the first Summit of the Presidents of the Adriatic Ports and to be able to host it as part of our Adriatic Sea Forum,” said Francesco di Cesare, president of Risposte Turismo. “The summit will be the first opportunity for the heads of the bodies administering the ports in the Adriatic area to meet and discuss in-person the best strategies and initiatives to enhance and promote the tourism potentials of the Adriatic area.”
Risposte Tourismo will also share key insights from the latest edition of the Adriatic Sea Tourism Report, its annual research report into the tourism movements in the Adriatic. According to the report, Italy, Croatia and Greece welcomed the largest number of cruise passengers in 2022, handling 1.5 million people, almost 900,000 visitors and around 533,000 travellers, respectively.
A total of almost 3.5 million passenger movements were recorded in more than 30 Adriatic cruise ports in 2022, a 242 per cent increase over 2021. The ports also hosted nearly 3,000 ship calls. However, these figures are lower than the record values for 2019, with a 39 per cent decline in passengers and an 11 per cent decrease in ship calls. Croatia ranks first in terms of the number of ship calls with 974, followed by Italy with 944 and Montenegro with 441. Among the ports covered in the report, Corfu in Greece handled more than half a million passengers during 392 ship calls, while Trieste in Italy handled nearly 425,000 passengers.
The ferry, hydrofoil and catamaran sector experienced a significant rise in traffic in 2022 compared to 2021, with passengersd up from 14 million in 2021 to 18 million in 2022, and calls increasing from 61,000 to 72,000 in the same year. However, the sector experienced an 11 per cent decline compared to the pre-pandemic year.
In 2022, Croatia led the way in ferry tourism, with nine million passengers, a 20.7 per cent increase compared to 2021. Greece and Italy followed closely behind, with 4.5 million and 2.8 million passengers, respectively.
Split in Croatia was the port that received the most ferry traffic, handling 4.8 million passengers, while Igoumenitsa in Greece followed in second place after welcoming 2.5 million passengers. The Croatian port of Zadar came third overall after receiving 2.45 million passengers, while Bari in Italy remained the leading port for passengers handled on international routes.
In total, the Adriatic Sea Forum 2023 will host 15 meetings, including panel discussions, speeches and presentations by more than 50 industry leaders. They will include Wybcke Meier, CEO of Tui Cruises; Tonči Glavina, state secretary of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports of Croatia; Rodolfo Giampieri, president of Assoporti; and Joze Tomaš, president of the Split Chamber of Commerce and of the Forum of Adriatic and Ionian Chambers of Commerce.
Register for the Adriatic Sea Forum here