4.1. Small-scale infrastructure improvements, especially in relation to environment
This activity foresees small-scale infrastructure improvements in the following fields: signposting, restoration of lookout spots and forestation.
Signs for tourism attractions are in deficiency throughout the Balkan peninsula. With this activity signs will be posted on major (frequent) routes and near tourist venues in the region West. It is important to note that the signs will not be only show directions for visitors as part of the infrastructure, but they are also an important communication tool about the determination of the region towards embracing tourism as economic activity.
Restoration of lookout spots (or local tourist venues) should serve the same purposes: improve tourism infrastructure, show immediate results and communicate keenness towards tourism and environment. The selection of these lookout points will depend on the selection of tourism products. In any case it will be done in close collaboration with the LAGs and the municipalities.
Forestation is the last in this sequence of infrastructure improvements. Forestation will be a response to the dangerous people’s actions of deforestation that may increasingly happen due to economic despair of the region West. Without forests and environment, tourism has little chances to take place. It is also an awareness raising effort for younger generations – that trees, forests and the environment should be preserved and well managed. The forestation activities will be organized in close cooperation with the municipalities as well as the administration in Prishtina (obtaining approvals to forest certain areas). It will be very much relied on voluntary efforts by the citizens, businesses and community groups. It will also include younger people (presumably students) as part of the awareness raising on the long term.
4.2 Share forestry and environment practices in regional context
This is the last activity of the project. It is a simple one, but with great potential for cross-border cooperation. It basically foresees meeting Macedonian institutions such as Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Agriculture, Public Forestry Enterprise and the organizers of a nation-wide forestation campaign named Day of the Tree. The purpose of the meetings is to exchange ideas how forest and land management is practiced in similar circumstances.
One of the expectations is to establish cooperation with the organizer of the Day of the Tree and link that with the previously mentioned forestation activity. The Day of the Tree in Macedonia has risen as the most famous and mass national forestation action. It has the ambition to move forward and initiate replication of the action in the neighbouring countries, including Kosovo. We consider this to be excellent opportunity for cross-border cooperation related to environment and ultimately supporting also tourism in the long run.