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Lisbon ,  February 26, 2015

Tourism companies may have access to "Azores Brand" certification, reveals Vítor Fraga

The Regional Secretary for Tourism and Transport announced today that the Government is working on the rules that will allow Azorean companies in the tourism sector to bear the seal "Azores: Certified by Nature" in the second half of this year.

Speaking at the presentation ceremony of the "Azores Brand" at the Lisbon Tourism Market, Vítor Fraga stressed that it will be synonymous with good practices, especially in the environmental field, as well as with quality and sustainability.

"Basically, the companies that will bear the seal are those that promote excellence. This seal will effectively contribute to their recognition, being regarded as an asset for all companies and all those who acquire their services," added the government official.

Vítor Fraga added that the "Azores Brand" is "a clearly territorial brand that is much more than a 'logo." It reflects the essence of our tourism offer in terms of natural, built, social or cultural heritage." According to him, this brand congregates the best the Region has to offer and wants to disseminate.

"Comprising all sectors of activity, the "Azores Brand is undoubtedly a brand that brings added value, being a tool at the service of our companies and at the service of all those involved in the promotion of the Azores destination," said the Regional Secretary.

Vítor Fraga emphasised that 2015 represents a turning point for the tourism sector with the implementation of the new accessibility model for the Region; the latter was awarded priority status by the Regional Government in this legislative period.

However, the Regional Secretary for Tourism and Transport reminded that this revision "is not an end in itself, but a means that gives us new opportunities and confront us with new challenges."

In this context, I would like to point out the access to new market segments, which should be regarded "from a perspective of generating added value rather than devouring the existing one."

Vítor Fraga also assured that the Government of the Azores "is, as it always was and will be, working with entrepreneurs committed to overcome new challenges."

"For those who face new challenges as ultimatums, I tell them to just do their part because the Azorean people, regional companies and all those involved the development of the Azores destination will do their part," said the Regional Secretary. According to him, the future should be regarded from a perspective of seizing opportunities, such as the growing importance of the online promotion of our destination, either through a digital component or social media.

Vítor Fraga assured that the Azorean Government believes that the Azores Tourism meets all the conditions to enter a new phase of development and continue a consolidation strategy that has been implemented over the last years in the main source markets, through partnerships between public and private entities.
"We can never forget that we are a young sector," the Regional Secretary said, recalling that "the tourism sector in the Azores is just over a decade and a half, being a strategic sector for the development of the Region."

"Naturally, there were many obstacles and difficulties that were overcome in this period; however, there were also many successful achievements," said the government official.

Vítor Fraga emphasised the "hard" work that was carried out by regional companies and the partners promoting the Azores Destination abroad. Tourism is now regarded in the Azores as a factor of development and a driving force in the development of other sectors of activity.

The Regional Secretary for Tourism and Transport also highlighted the cooperation with the business sector on a daily basis, an effort that achieved the results and goals desired by the Government.  Moreover, the government official emphasised the strong commitment and motivation of tourism entrepreneurs that have worked to achieve results.

"It is not a recent motivation since it comes over time. We will only be able to build something if we have this motivation, this force and this determination," Vítor Fraga stated, recalling that the tourism sector was effectively built in the Azores and is about to enter a new stage of development with new prospects.

"Good prospects, above all, are important since they give us the certainty that will have a lot of hard work ahead of us so that we may overcome challenges and achieve success," said the Regional Secretary.



Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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