USAID's comprehensive approach to tourism will improve Bosnia and Herzegovina’s economy and foster social harmony.
Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) has unique layers of history and one of Europe’s most distinguished natural landscapes. Yet fractious governance, high unemployment, the low participation of women in the labor force, an aging population, and the emigration of skilled youth undercut the country’s prosperity. The tourism sector has the potential to address these challenges and catalyze economic growth. In 2019, the country had the third-highest tourism growth rate in the world, and tourism contributed more than $456 million to the economy. In 2020, however, the COVID-19 pandemic decreased tourism revenues by more than 85 percent and hampered the sector’s development.
USAID’s Developing Sustainable Tourism (Turizam) project facilitates broad-based, tourism-driven economic growth and promotes social harmony by capitalizing on BiH’s rich cultural heritage and natural beauty. The project, which began in August 2020, supports the BiH tourism sector’s recovery from the negative impacts of the pandemic by fostering collaboration among all levels of government, industry, and community stakeholders. This five-year $20 million project is implemented by Chemonics International.
To transform BiH into a more competitive tourism destination, the project works to improve the economic regulatory environment, enhance the quality and diversity of products and offers, professionalize the tourism workforce and businesses, and creatively brand and promote the country to high-yield visitors.
● Establish an enabling environment with the harmonized policies and regulations needed for noticeable growth in the tourism sector
● Strengthen tourism quality, services, and branding
● Improve access to finance for tourism service providers and other small and medium-sized businesses in tourism-related sectors, such as agriculture
● Increase access to regional and global tourism and agriculture markets
● Accelerated tourism recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic
● Increased tourism receipts and bed nights
● Increased tourism competitiveness rank (from 105 to 85 on the World Economic Forum's Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report)
● Improved destination brand rank (from 116 to 96 on the Bloom Consulting Country Brand Rank)
● Leveraging of more than 40 million Bosnian marks in private investment
● More than 3,000 new tourism-related jobs
● Expanded market access for local agricultural products
● More protected nature areas
● Location: Countrywide, with offices in Sarajevo, Banja Luka, and Mostar
● Duration: 2020-2025
● Key counterparts: BiH Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations; Federation of BiH Ministry of Environment and Tourism; and Repubilka Srpska Ministry of Trade and Tourism
● Partner contact: email@example.com or +387 33 726 360
● USAID contact: Erol Mujanovic, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org