Belgians should spend holidays in Wallonia, says Tourism Minister
Share article:
Share article:

Belgians should spend holidays in Wallonia, says Tourism Minister

The city of Dinant in Wallonia. Credit: Jiuguang Wang (CC Commons)

Wallonia’s government plans to focus special attention on tourism as it studies its options for relaunching the various economic sectors after the crisis caused by the new coronavirus (Covid-19).

“People do not realise it, but the economic weight of the tourism sector is considerable, with an added value of 4.1%,” said Walloon Minister for Tourism Valerie De Bue, to L’Echo on Saturday.

Tourism accounts for the equivalent of 60,000 full-time jobs, which is not much less than construction, she said. “There are 300 attractions in Wallonia,” De Bue recalled. “It’s a very varied sector that achieves a turnover of €7.9 billion per year, €3 billion in tourist spending and €13 million overnight stays.”

This year, the sector has been hard hit by confinement measures linked to the coronavirus and is at a standstill. Gross turnover losses amounted to €82 million in March and €89 million in April, the minister disclosed, noting that the sector “can already say goodbye to the 10% of the annual income usually earned during the Easter Holidays.”

Related News:


To avert a disaster, De Bue has just set up a working group that includes Tourism Division representatives and meets twice a week. “We need to do damage limitation and save what can be saved,” she said. Tourism promotion campaigns have to be reviewed since we are going to target local tourism.”

“Given the uncertainty and health conditions, Belgians will want to stay at home and consume local,” De Bue said, noting that a Dedicated Research survey has been launched to analyse Belgians’ expectations for their holidays.

“Therefore, we need to change habits and this recovery plan will be a springboard for the future of Walloon tourism,” De Bue added. “But the sector is also highly diversified, so it needs to be accompanied, stimulated, while a clear recovery message and a common identity for the entire sector need to be adopted.”

The message is focused on spending one’s holidays in Wallonia, she stressed.

The Brussels Times

Latest news

Ruined photos from flood victims restored for free
Much of what victims of this summer’s deadly flooding lost is irreplaceable, but when it comes to photographs that were ruined, a Brussels company is ...
New Belgian video game aims to help children who stutter
A new video game by Belgian-American start-up Say It Labs aims to teach children with a stutter various techniques to improve their speech.  ...
More than 1 in 4 Belgians use mobile phones whilst driving
A recent European study into the use of mobile phones whilst driving highlights some alarming results: 26% of Belgians read or send messages on their ...
Belgium in Brief: Memories Of Masks
Belgium's experts are concerned with the rising coronavirus figures. One possible solution could be that, once again, masks are used more widely. ...
Museum Nights Fever returns to Brussels on Saturday night
After a break last year, Museum Nights Fever 2021 is back again with free visits to 32 museums hosting performances, music and other events. The ...
More than €1.5 billion injected into SNCB
More than €1.5 billion in additional funding has been injected into the Belgian railways, Federal Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet told the House ...
Non-vaccinated applicants no longer welcome at ZNA hospitals in Antwerp
The Antwerp hospital group ZNA is only taking on new employees who have been vaccinated against the coronavirus, according to reporting from VRT. ...
Pharmacies prepare to administer more rapid antigen tests
From November, anyone presenting coronavirus symptoms for less than six days will be able to take a rapid antigen test in a pharmacy, announced the ...
Chocolate, Christmas, and cocaine
Do you consider yourself a news buff? Someone constantly on top of what's going on? Then maybe you have what it takes to ace The Brussels Times ...
Introduction of Covid Safe Ticket leads more in Brussels to get vaccinated
The introduction of the Covid Safe Ticket (CST) in the Brussels-Capital Region on 15 October seems to have led to a higher number of residents ...
More and more testimonies, and a second rally against sexual violence in Brussels
A second rally against sexual violence was held in the Brussels neighbourhood of Ixelles on Thursday evening, and a sister-rally was held ...
Over 1,000 Covid-19 hospitalisations for first time since early June
The number of patients hospitalised in Belgium as a result of the coronavirus has again exceeded 1,000, climbing to 1,032, according to figures ...