On July 26 and 27, 2022, the “CIRO Cycling Route Management Plan” was presented in Mostar and Trebinje as part of the “ĆIRO – World Heritage Trail” project, which is financed by the European Union and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany. By signing this agreement, the cities of Mostar, Trebinje and Stolac and the municipalities of Neum, Ravno and Bileća adopt a plan for cooperation in the maintenance, management and promotion of the cycling route “Ćiro”.
To date, 330 km of the “Ćiro” cycling route have been developed, and the most popular section is the 180 km long section from Mostar to Dubrovnik. The remaining two trails “Ćiro Heritage” and “Ćiro II” with lengths of 70 km and 80 km were finalized this year, and their promotion to cycle tourists from all over the world is yet to come.
The “Ćiro” route also includes areas on the territory of Čapljina and Stolac, which have a special landmark – UNESCO world heritage sites, which will enrich the overall tourist offer and achieve better socio-economic results for the communities in the area of the “Ćiro – world heritage trail” route.
The European Union supported the creation of the “Ćiro” trail through several projects with the aim of strengthening and diversifying the quality of the tourist offer, as well as the development and promotion of cycling and tourist offers outdoors and in rural areas of Bosnia and Herzegovina. These projects improved the infrastructure, but also expanded the offer of trails for cycle tourists to areas that were not covered by the “Ćiro” trail.
The signing of this Agreement ensures the improvement of the coordination of development tourism activities in the region of Herzegovina and the strengthening of the quality and offer of the bicycle route “Ćiro” in order to attract new tourists, support local entrepreneurship, increase domestic and foreign investments, increase employment and improve the quality of life of residents in rural areas signatory to the Agreement.
For the purpose of drawing up the plan, the Association for Economic Development REDAH and the association Herzegovina Bike Mostar held three interactive workshops in Trebinje, Čapljina and Ravno with key actors from the public, private and non-governmental sectors from Herzegovina. This was followed by the drafting of the document “Management Plan for the ĆIRO Cycling Route”, in which 22 representatives of local self-government, public institutions, development agencies, non-governmental organizations and private service providers in the tourism sector participated.
The goal of creating the “ĆIRO Cycling Route Management Plan” is the development of a document that will deal with the management of the “Ćiro” cycling route in a systematic, coordinated and planned manner, thus ensuring its functionality and sustainability, but also being one of the generators of tourism development in the entire project area.
The document defines the strategic directions of development, necessary resources, responsibilities in the implementation of various measures/activities/programs. As part of the plan, the method of implementation, monitoring and reporting on the implemented activities is defined. This will ensure a gradual, mutually coordinated, and thus long-term sustainable development of “Ćiro” in the entire project area, which will lead to increased competitiveness and more significant tourist activities in all of Herzegovina.
Mr. Ermin Smajlović, representative of GiZ, addressed those present in Mostar and briefly presented the Eu4Business project and the activities implemented as part of this project.
After that, Mrs. Ines Popovac, adviser to the Mayor of the City of Mostar, greeted the attendees and emphasized the importance of the development and future implementation of the ĆIRO cycling Route Management Plan, which supports the City of Mostar, recognizing cycling tourism as one of the important elements of tourism development.
A short welcome speech was also given by Mr. Predrag Tešić, Assistant Minister of Trade and Tourism of Republika Srpska.
As part of the event in Mostar, a ceremony was held to award the Bike Friendly Standard certificate to 5 facilities in the area of Mostar.
In Trebinje, on behalf of the City of Trebinje and the mayor, Mr. Dražen Bošković, deputy mayor, welcomed those present and highlighted the activities that the City of Trebinje has carried out so far in support of tourism development, and emphasized that the City of Trebinje supports this initiative and the implementation of the Management Plan, whereby it is important regional cooperation and coordination.
Ivica Sivrić, director of REDAH, said that the development of the “Ciro Cycling Route Management Plan” represents the continuation of activities on the development and promotion of tourism around the “Ćiro” route, which will contribute to better communication and coordination of actors in the area of the route, which will ultimately mean that the destination managed in a systematic way, and will result in an increase in the number of tourists and thus a better position of all interested actors involved in the activities of providing services.
After the presentation of the results, a ceremonial signing of the Agreement on cooperation on the maintenance, management and promotion of the bicycle route “Ćiro” was organized in both cities. The agreement was signed by six mayors of Herzegovinian municipalities and cities that gravitate towards this route.
“In all of this, it is very important that the coordinating body Forum of the cycling route “Ćiro” was established, which consists of all those involved in the creation of this document. The Executive Body of the Forum will be responsible for the implementation of this plan, with material and financial support from the local self-government units that are signatories to the Agreement on Cooperation on the Maintenance, Management and Promotion of this cycling route,” said Sivrić.
The project is part of the wider EU4Business project, whose goal is to strengthen the BiH economy, encourage the development of entrepreneurship, export-oriented sectors, tourism and agriculture, as well as rural development. EU4Business is financed by the European Union with 15 million euros and the Federal Republic of Germany with 1.1 million euros. EU4Business is jointly implemented by GIZ, ILO and UNDP. More information about the EU4Business project at www.eu4business.ba .
For more information, please contact:
Ivica Sivrić, director of the Association for Economic/Economic Development REDAH
Contact phone: 063 295 766
E-mail: [email protected]