9 - 11 January 2003, Sheraton Sofia Hotel Balkan


January 8, 2003
13:00 - 18:00 Registration, Sofia Sheraton Hotel Balkan, Banquet Lobby
January 9, 2003
8:00 - 9:00 Registration, Sofia Sheraton Hotel Balkan, Banquet Lobby
9:00 - 9:30 Official Opening, Sheraton Sofia Hotel Balkan, Sredetz Ballroom
Welcoming address by Mr. Simeon Saxe-Coburg, Prime Minister, Republic of Bulgaria
Mr. Nikolay Vassilev, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy
Mr. Bob Miller, Former Governor of Nevada State, USA, Conference Co-Organizer
Mr. Maxim Behar, Chief Executive, M3 Communications Group, Inc., Conference Co-Organizer
9:30 - 10:10 Panel Session 1: Quality of the tourism in Bulgaria. Governmental programs for improvement and development of the tourist services
Mr. Dimitar Hadzhinikolov, Deputy Minister of Economy and Chairman of the Program Committee of the conference
10:10 - 10:25 Coffee Break
10:25 - 12:00 Panel Session 2: Southeast Europe - attractive and now more competitive tourist destination
Mrs. Güldal Akşit, Minister of Tourism, Turkey
Mr. A. Zohadzopoulus, Minister of Development, Greece
Mr. Zdenko Micic, Deputy Minister of Tourism, Croatia
Mr. Igor Paravishnikov, Deputy Chairman of the State Tourism Administration, Ukraine
Mr. Nicku Radulesku, Secretary of State of Tourism, Romania
Mrs. Iskra Yotzova, Director, International Tourism Policy, Ministry of Economy
12:00 - 13:10Panel Session 3: Year 2003 - will tourism pick up again?
Mr. Luigi Cabrini, Regional Representative for Europe, WTO /World Tourism Organization/
Mr. Jaime-Axel Ruiz Baudrihaye, Excecutive Director of European Travel Commission
Mr. Gerd Hesselmann, Chairman, Hesselmann & Associate, Former President of the German Travel Agency and Tour Operator Association
Mrs. Gill Wilson, Chief Executive, Central European Countries Travel Association
13:10 - 14:00 Lunch
14:00 - 15:15Panel Session 4: 2003 - time for Bulgarian tourism to provide high quality services
Mrs. Lyudmila Nenkova, Riviera Holiday Club, Varna
Mrs. Donka Sokolova, President, Bulgarian Association of Tourist Agencies
Mrs. Evgenia Gencheva, Managing Director, Russalka Holidays Tourism Holding
Mrs. Nedialka Sandalska, Executive Director, Balkantourist Holding
15:15 - 16:30Panel Session 5: Quality of transportation and travel services
Mr. Dieter Grosse, GM, Lufthansa
Mr. Daniel Burkard, Regional Commercial Manager, Eastern Europe, British Airways
Mr. Emil Delibashev, Country Commercial Manager British Airways Bulgaria
 Information technology vehicles: Bulgaria's global ticket
Mr. Lambros Deemou, Senior Consultant, Sales and Marketing, Travel and Tourism Systems, Intracom S.A.
16:30 - 16:45Coffee Break
16:45 - 18:30Panel Session 6: Quality of the hotels and restaurants services in a challenging environment.
16:45 - 18:88To be a five-star in Bulgaria
Mr. Armin Zerunyan, GM, Hilton Sofia
Mr. Manos Iatrou, GM, Sheraton Sofia Hotel Balkan
Mr. John Grieg, GM, Radisson SAS Grand Hotel.
18:00 - 18:30The hospitality industry in Bulgaria - turn your family house into a small and profitable hotel
Mrs. Svetlana Beleva, Villa Oraka, Stoikite, Southeast Rodopi
Mr. Vladimir Petrov, Old Bistrilitza House, Stara Planina
18:30End of Day 1 - Closing remarks
19:30Cocktail Reception, Sheraton Sofia Hotel Balkan, Serdica Ball Room
January 10, 2003
09:00 - 9:30Panel session 7: Tourism Animation or how to make the guest a partner emotionally linked to the values, the experience and the feelings staged by the City.
Ass. Prof. Dr. Maria Vodenska, Chair of Tourism, Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski"
Mr. Nikolay Mindov, Chairman, Bulgarian Guides Association
09:30 - 10:10Panel Session 8: Quality of education and training. Maximizing staff performance.
Mr. Todor Radev, Rector, International College - Albena
Mrs. Diana Ivanova, Director of Hotels and Restaurants Technical School, Gabrovo
10:10 - 10:30 Coffee Break
10:30 - 13:00Panel Session 9: Tourism = environment + economics + culture
10:30 - 11:10Responsible Business - obligatory for a high quality service
Mrs. Dolores Arsenova, Minister of Environment
Mr. John Grieg, GM, Radisson SAS Grand Hotel.

11:10- 11:45 Be flexible and approach market aggressively
Ass. Prof. Dr. Hristo Kaftandzhiev, Faculty of Journalism and Mass Communications, Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski"
Mrs. Annabele Grajeles, Executive Vice President, City Tours, New York City, USA
11:45 - 12:30Capturing the heart and mind of the UK market
Mr. James Knight, Director of Business Development, Senior King Communications Group, UK
Mr. Pavel Yazakiev, Chairman Foreign Investment Agency, Bulgaria
12:30 - 13:00 Mr. Assoc. Ivan Jelev, Dean of Theological Faculty, Sofia University "St. Kl. Ohridski"
13:00 - 14:00Lunch
14:00 - 15:00Panel Session 10: Tourists in Bulgaria - ways to guarantee their safety and security in 2003
Gen. Boyko Borisov, Chief Secretary, Ministry of Internal Affairs
Mrs. Fani Gencheva, Representative by power of attorney, General Insurance, DZI
Mr. Pencho Babukchiev, Mountain Rescue Service in Bulgaria
15:00 - 16:20Panel Session 11: Alternative and ecotourism
15:00 - 15:20Developing a local cultural strategy in an international tourism destination.
Mr. Patrick Sciarratta, Executive Director, Friendship Ambassadors Foundation
15:20 -15:50Bozhentzi and Leshten. Small towns; successful stories.
Mr. Nikofor Dardanov, GM, Dzhelepova Kashta, Bozhentsi
Mr. Nickola Marinov, GM, Ethnographical Complex Leshten
15:50 - 16:05USAID's activities in the area of ecotourism at Bulgaria
Mrs. Kamelia Georgieva, Ecotourism Program Coordinator of BCEG Project / USAID
16:05 - 16:45How can ecotourism become an effective tool for conservation and sustainable development.
Mr. Dimitar Marinov, Chief Secretary, Association of Ecotourism in Kalofer
Mr. Luybomir Popyordanov, Chairman, Association for Alternative Tourism
16:45 - 17:00Coffee Break
17:35 - 18:30Panel Session 12: Olympic Games, Athens 2004
17:00 - 17:20Bulgarian sport facilities - ready or not to offer good conditions and high quality services to sportsmen
Mr. Vasil Ivanov, Minister of Youth and Sports
17:20 - 17:35Athens 2004 - a way to promote the cultural and natural heritage of the region
Mr. Ivan Slavkov, Chairmain, Bulgarian Olympic Committee
Mrs. Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki, President of the Board. Organizing Committee, Athens 2004
17:35 - 18:30How to use the Olympic Games to attract more tourists to Bulgaria - a parallel with the Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA and the state of Nevada
Mr. Thomas Tait, Former Minister of Tourism, Nevada State (1989 - 2001), Vice President of Lake Las Vegas Resort, USA, Conference Co-organizer
Mr. Tim Williams, President of Advertising, R&R Partners, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
18:30 - 19:00End of day 2
Official Closing
Guest of honor Mr. Georgy Parvanov, President of the Republic of Bulgaria
Mr. Thomas Tait, Former Minister of Tourism, Nevada State (1989 - 2001), Vice President of Lake Las Vegas Resort, USA, Conference Co-organizer
20:00Official Gala Dinner
Guest Speaker