Cargo shipments of Botox and cheese replace passengers for starving airlines

first_imgCoronavirus: Cargo shipments of Botox and cheese replace passengers for starving airlines Search quotes, news & videoslast_img

Stock market today, e-commerce stock to rally higher

first_imgNot so fast, says Mark Tepper, president of Strategic Wealth Partners: Some stay-at-home stocks that rocketed higher this year could still have legs.“Investors are realizing … we’ve experienced some structural changes in our lives and in our economy and we’re never going to go back 100% to the way we were in 2019. So, I would actually be looking at this as a buy-the-dip opportunity on all the stocks that were working this year,” Tepper told CNBC’s “Trading Nation” on Tuesday.Tepper is betting on one e-retail play that could continue to outperform.- Advertisement – “The company that I have the most conviction in right here, right now is, because e-commerce, that’s not going anywhere. And this is really our derivative play on e-commerce. It’s basically Amazon for your mom-and-pop small businesses, not just shipping but also warehouse solutions as well, so I think right now you’ve got to buy the dip,” said has rallied 121% this year, one of the top performers in the XRT retail ETF.Todd Gordon, founder of, instead sees opportunity in the banking stocks.- Advertisement – “Interesting potential breakout here in Morgan, plus it’s yielding 2.5%, so I’ll just go there for now,” said Gordon.Disclosure: Strategic Wealth Partners holds shares of – Advertisement –center_img “We’re seeing a move higher in yield — pretty impressive back up in yields — helping banks, especially regional banks, plus we’re seeing a higher regime in the VIX, and keep in mind we’re coming off like a decade low in like a 12/13/14 VIX, we’re settling in 20/25/30, and investors know they need help … from professional money managers,” Gordon said during the same “Trading Nation” segment.In particular, Gordon is eyeing Morgan Stanley for a move higher — he noted that the break above its long-term trend line stretching back to 2000 looks promising. A great rotation in the market is underway.Cyclical recovery stocks such as Boeing have outperformed this week, while names that outperformed during the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns, such as Amazon, have fallen. Renewed hopes that the U.S. might turn the corner in the Covid crisis soon have buoyed markets.- Advertisement –last_img read more

Ladbrokes Trophy on radar after Siruh’s early exit | Racing News

first_imgSiruh Du Lac may attempt to gain compensation in Newbury’s Ladbrokes Trophy after his early Paddy Power Gold Cup exit.The seven-year-old failed to complete for the third race in succession when he parted company with Tom Scudamore at the first fence in Saturday’s Grade Three handicap at Cheltenham, on his stable debut for David Pipe.- Advertisement – “He is in the Ladbrokes Trophy and he might go there, or we might just wait and go back to Cheltenham in December for the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup.” Assessing future plans, Pipe is considering stepping Siruh Du Lac up to three and a quarter miles for the first time on November 28, in a race for which he is a general 20-1 shot.Pipe said: “It was over very quickly in the Paddy Power on Saturday – and there were a few expletives, that’s safe to say!“That’s racing, though, these things happen and he seemed fine after the race.- Advertisement –center_img – Advertisement –last_img read more

Courteney Cox Shares Funny Selfie While Microblading Brows: Pic

first_imgCourteney Cox Shares Snap of Microbladed Brows and Stars Cannot Get EnoughCourteney Cox Courtesy Courteney Cox/InstagramOMG! Courteney Cox shared the most hilarious selfie while getting a little beauty treatment.On Sunday, November 15, the 56-year-old posted a pic to Instagram of herself while microblading her eyebrows. “Had my eyebrows microbladed,” she wrote in the accompanying caption. “Too much?”- Advertisement – – Advertisement – The stars didn’t think so! Tons of A-listers chimed in on the comments, such as Lily Collins and Gwyneth Paltrow, who posted a series of encouraging heart and laughing emojis.Others praised the Friends alum. “I think it’s perfect ❤️,” Michelle Pfeiffer wrote. “Smoke show,” commented Kate Hudson and “More,” wrote Sean Hayes. “Hahaha nope spot on,” Brandi Carlile posted.Then there were other celebs who couldn’t wait to get in on the joke, writing that they didn’t notice anything off. “I don’t see the difference,” Jesse Tyler Ferguson joked. “Wait! What?? I see no difference! 💋” Kathy Najimy posted.- Advertisement – Microblading is favored by many celebrities, from Serena Williams to Tori Spelling. Back in August, Spelling shared a before-and-after pic of her brows, praising the microblading process. “Ok, I finally took the BROW PLUNGE. I know sooooo many people who have tried #microblading but honestly I was terrified to do it,” she wrote in the accompanying caption.But after over-plucking throughout the ‘90s, she decided to give it a go. “Who knew brows could literally boost your self confidence! I feel so good about myself right now. Thank you my friend! So natural. So easy. So brilliant.”Listen on Spotify to Get Tressed With Us to get the details of every hair love affair in Hollywood, from the hits and misses on the red carpet to your favorite celebrities’ street style ‘dos (and don’ts!) “I’m not seeing anything different than normal,” Geoff Stults wrote. “Am I missing something?”Courteney Cox attends The Last Ship musical Courteney Cox Shares Snap of Microbladed Brows and Stars Cannot Get EnoughCourteney Cox attends ‘The Last Ship’ musical at Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles on January 22, 2020. Ryan Miller/ShutterstockHowever, our favorite comment came from Schitt’s Creek actress Sara Levy, who hilariously wrote, “Dad?” Of course, she’s referencing her father Eugene Levy’s legendary dark, thick brows.The microblading was done by microblading artist and owner of cosmetic tattoo studio, Audrey Glass. She reposted Cox’s selfie to her Instagram Story, writing, “Nothing like a client who has a good time with the process!” Then she responded to Cox’s question, “Is there such a thing as too much brows?!” Honestly, in this day and age, not really.- Advertisement –last_img read more

Pentagon announces U.S. military reduction in Iraq and Afghanistan

first_img“Afghanistan risks becoming once again a platform for international terrorists to plan and organize attacks on our homelands. And ISIS could rebuild in Afghanistan the terror caliphate it lost in Syria and Iraq,” the NATO chief said, referring to Islamic State militants. – Advertisement – In 2003, NATO joined the international security effort in Afghanistan and currently has more than 7,000 troops in the country. NATO’s security operation in Afghanistan was launched after the alliance activated its mutual defense clause — known as Article 5 — for the first time in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.Last week, Miller ascended to the Pentagon’s acting Secretary of Defense role after President Donald Trump’s sudden termination of Secretary of Defense Mark Esper.In an early Saturday morning message to Department of Defense employees, Miller said he was “weary of war” and that it was time to end America’s conflicts in the Middle East.“We are not a people of perpetual war — it is the antithesis of everything for which we stand for which our ancestors fought. All wars must end,” Miller wrote, adding that the U.S. was “on the verge of defeating Al Qaida and its associates.”“We met the challenge; we gave it our all. Now, it’s time to come home,” Miller wrote. – Advertisement – The wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria have cost U.S. taxpayers more than $1.57 trillion since Sept. 11, 2001, according to a Defense Department report. The war in Afghanistan, which has dragged on to become America’s longest conflict, began 19 years ago and has cost U.S. taxpayers $193 billion, according to the Pentagon.Trump, who campaigned in 2016 on stopping “ridiculous endless wars” in the Middle East, took to Twitter last month to announce that American forces currently serving in Afghanistan will be home by Christmas.At the time, it was unclear if Trump was giving an order via tweet or reiterating a long-held campaign promise in order to appeal to voters ahead of the U.S. presidential election.Earlier this year, the United States brokered a peace deal with the Taliban that would usher in a permanent cease-fire and reduce the U.S. military’s footprint from approximately 13,000 to 8,600 by mid-July. And by May 2021, all foreign forces would leave the war-torn country.Trump has previously directed the Pentagon to reduce the U.S. fighting force in conflict zones. In 2018, Trump tweeted that the United States would be withdrawing troops out of Syria, a move that sent a shockwave through the Pentagon and contributed in part to the resignation of then-Defense Secretary James Mattis. Trump later reversed his decision to withdraw from Syria.In May, Trump complained on Twitter that America’s role in Afghanistan has been reduced to a “police force” and not a “fighting force.”When asked about the tweet by reporters during a White House event, Trump said that the U.S. could go back to Afghanistan if needed.“We can always go back if we have to. If we have to go back, we’ll go back, and we’ll go back raging,” Trump said in May. WASHINGTON — Acting Pentagon chief Christopher Miller said Tuesday that the United States will reduce its military presence in Afghanistan to 2,500 troops and 2,500 troops in Iraq by Jan. 15.The United States has approximately 4,500 troops currently in Afghanistan and more than 3,000 in Iraq.“This decision by the president is based on continuous engagement with his national security cabinet over the past several months including ongoing discussions with me and my colleagues across the United States government,” Miller said at the Pentagon.- Advertisement – Soldiers of the 82nd Airborne Division gather their equipment before boarding a CH-47F Chinook that serves with the Task Force Flying Dragons, or 1st General Support Aviation Battalion., 25th Avn. Regiment, 16th Combat Avn. Brigade, in the Nawa Valley, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan,Photo: U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston | FlickrCC Members of Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team depart to conduct an equipment survey of a Department of Public Works facility Aug. 8 in Afghanistan.Photo: U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Timothy Chacon | Flickr CC “And just this morning, I spoke with key leaders in Congress as well as our allies and partners abroad to update them on these plans in light of our shared approach,” Miller said, adding that he spoke with NATO Secretary-General Stoltenberg and Afghanistan’s President Ghani on Tuesday. “We went in together, we adjust together and when the time is right, we will leave together,” Miller said.Earlier on Tuesday, Stoltenberg warned that leaving the war-torn country too soon or in an uncoordinated effort could present unintended consequences for the world’s largest military organization. – Advertisement –last_img read more

Hybrid avian-human flu virus didn’t spread in lab study

first_imgJul 31, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – In an experiment designed to mimic events that could launch an influenza pandemic, a synthetic influenza virus made by combining an H5N1 avian flu virus with a human flu virus turned out to be no more contagious in an animal model than the natural H5N1 virus, US scientists are reporting this week.Researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) made two hybrid viruses and infected ferrets with them, according to a report to be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The viruses failed to spread from infected ferrets to healthy ones in neighboring cages.”We found that they [the viruses] were not able to transmit efficiently,” said CDC researcher Dr. Jackie Katz, speaking at a Jul 28 teleconference. “In fact, they were also not as able to cause severe disease as the original H5N1 virus.”The deadly H5N1 virus has infected 232 people and killed 134 since late 2003, but it has not yet found a way to spread easily from person to person. But scientists fear the virus could pick up that ability if it combined, or reassorted, with a human flu virus, which could happen if someone became infected with both types simultaneously. The CDC set out to create such a hybrid and test it in ferrets. The animals are considered good models for flu virus research because their susceptibility to flu viruses is similar to that of humans.CDC officials cautioned against taking much comfort from the experimental results. Although the synthetic hybrid didn’t spread among the ferrets in the experiments so far, that doesn’t mean the scenario couldn’t happen in nature, they said. (Also, experts say the H5N1 virus could become transmissible through accumulated small mutations, without reassortment.)”These data do not mean that H5N1 cannot convert to be transmissible from person to person; they mean it’s probably not a simple process and more than simple genetic exchanges are necessary,” CDC Director Dr. Julie Gerberdng said at the teleconference.The H5N1 virus used in the study was a strain collected in 1997, when the pathogen first infected humans in Hong Kong. The human flu virus used in the study was an H3N2 strain, which has been common in recent decades. The research involved four steps, according to Katz.First, investigators assessed whether the H3N2 and H5N1 viruses would spread in ferrets, whose cages were arranged so that viruses could spread via respiratory droplets. The human virus did spread efficiently, whereas the avian virus didn’t, which signaled that the ferrets were serving as good models for human infection, Katz said.The next step was to generate reassortant viruses. “We made two viruses that contained surface protein genes from the H5N1 virus and internal genes from the human H3N2 virus,” Katz said. “We found we could make these viruses and that some of them were viable.”Third, the scientists infected some ferrets with the hybrid viruses and waited to see if they would spread to healthy ferrets. The hybrid viruses caused less severe illness than the original H5N1 strain, and they failed to spread.Finally, the investigators wanted to know if the hybrid viruses would naturally mutate to become more transmissible if they were passed through several ferrets in succession. So the researchers infected ferrets and, after the ferrets showed symptoms, took nasal secretions and used them to infect other ferrets, repeating this step five times. Further, the researchers assessed whether the virus could spread more easily after all these generations or “passages.””We found that the virus did not acquire any additional capacity to transmit efficiently from infected ferrets to healthy ferrets,” Katz said.Katz didn’t explain why the CDC used a 1997 strain of H5N1 instead of a more recent strain, but said more recent isolates will be used in further experiments. Later versions of both H5N1 and H3N2 will be used to make further hybrids for testing in ferrets, she said. Scientists have identified a number of mutations in the H5N1 virus since 1997.”We did test the more recent strains [of H5N1] for their ability to transmit, and like the 1997 strains, they could not transmit efficiently from one animal to the next,” she said. “We need to continue to study this.”The CDC officials were asked whether reassortment “dumbs down” or weakens the virus. Katz replied that the hybrids were less virulent than H5N1, but cautioned that the results apply only to the 1997 strain.Gerberding commented, “The pandemics of 1957 and 1968 were caused by reassortant viruses. Those were not dumb viruses.”In answering other questions, Katz said some scientists believe the 1918 pandemic virus, unlike the 1957 and 1968 viruses, arose through slowly accumulating mutations in an avian virus rather than through a reassortment event. “We’re looking at the approach of the 1957 and 1968 pandemics where there was a more sudden change,” she said.The most important lesson of the research so far, according to Katz, is “the knowledge that this process isn’t simple, the procedure for the virus to acquire the properties of transmissibility.”She said the CDC also created a hybrid that involved H3N2 virus surface proteins and H5N1 internal genes—the reverse of the hybrid she first described—and “that was not sufficient for transmissibility either. . . . That points to the fact that it’s a complex interaction of the surface genes and the internal genes.”Gerberding warned that the findings shouldn’t lead to complacency.”I’m not reassured from the public health perspective,” she said. “This virus is still out there, it’s still evolving, and influenza is always unpredictable. . . . So let’s not use the word ‘reassuring’ with respect to what might happen with H5N1.”Because of the risk that the reassortant viruses could spread, the research was done under stringent containment, involving Biosafety Level 3 with extra precautions, Katz said.Maines TR, Chen LM, Matsuoka Y, et al. Lack of transmission of H5N1 avian-human reassortant influenza viruses in a ferret model. Proc Natl Acad Sci 2006 (published online Jul 31) [Abstract]See also:Jan 14, 2005, CIDRAP News story “CDC to mix avian, human flu viruses in pandemic study”last_img read more

WHO report explores patent issues concerning flu viruses

first_imgOct 17, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) yesterday released a report on patenting issues related to influenza viruses, following up on a resolution adopted by the World Health Assembly in May to address the concerns of Indonesia and other developing countries about access to pandemic flu vaccines and treatments.The report was prepared by the Geneva-based World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and will be presented at a WHO intergovernmental meeting on virus sharing and access to vaccines, which will take place in Geneva from Nov 20 through 23. Like the WHO, WIPO is a United Nations agency.Indonesia stopped sending H5N1 samples to the WHO last December as a protest, saying the country couldn’t afford the vaccines that drug companies would develop from the virus samples they submitted. Since then Indonesia has shared only a few samples.Indonesia’s action raised the possibility that it and other countries affected by H5N1 flu might claim legal ownership of H5N1 isolates. Researchers need H5N1 samples to track the virus’s evolution and drug susceptibility and to develop vaccines.The 41-page WHO report emphasizes that its purpose is to provide technical background information on patent issues related to influenza viruses, not to address questions such as benefit sharing, virus surveillance, or vaccine production.The pace of patent activity surrounding H5N1 and other avian flu viruses has picked up dramatically, the report says. The first patent applications was made in 1983, but 35% of all patent requests referring to avian flu viruses or H5N1 were made in the first 9 months of this year. “There is considerable diversity in this activity, with publications from over 100 different actors representing a mix of private firms, individual inventors, public sector institutions, and government agencies,” the report notes.In reviewing general patent law principles, the authors state that naturally occurring substances that are not altered by human interventions are not considered patentable. “Hence, a wild flu strain as such would be inherently unpatentable—put simply, it cannot be seen as an ‘invention’, the fit subject matter of a patent,” the report says.Also, there is no international patent, the authors say. A Patent Cooperation Treaty exists to administer international patent applications, but to enforce patent rights, a party must actively seek patents though a country’s national system or a regional group such as the European Patent Office.The authors, while not making definitive legal assessments, highlight several observations. Among them:Early, open publication of the gene sequence of a newly isolated flu virus strain would preclude patent protection, but would facilitate broad-based research and development.Sequencing a gene using regular laboratory techniques is not likely to be considered inventive or nonobvious enough to warrant a patent.Unless there is a clearly disclosed and defined new and useful function, most countries deny patent protection for gene sequences.Initial searches did not find any patents for wild viruses, though there were several for newly engineered genetic materials such as synthetic virus-like particles (VLPs), methods of producing them, and vaccines produced from them.Patent rights are not absolute. For example, many national patent laws allow researchers to use patented inventions for certain purposes related to research but not to commercial application.The authors write that future editions of their report will include clearer depictions of patenting scenarios along the vaccine development pipeline, such as inventions that incorporate genetic material from flu viruses and new vaccine production technologies.In the years ahead, the patent system will face several complex challenges, the report says. For example, the system will have a role in clarifying technology partnerships, will induce investments in vaccine production by affording exclusivity in certain instances, and will provide greater transparency in vaccine research and development.In line with the resolution adopted by the World Health Assembly in May, a WHO working group of 24 countries has been working on several projects, such as drafting standardized terms and conditions for sharing of viruses and devising oversight mechanisms. According to previous news reports, finalized documents will be submitted at the WHO’s intergovernmental meeting in November.See also:WHO working paper on patent issues related to influenza virusesJun 19 CIDRAP News story “Virus ownership claims could disrupt flu vaccine system”May 23 CIDRAP News story “WHO adopts resolution on flu virus sharing”Aug 1 CIDRAP News story “WHO working group grapping with virus-sharing issues”last_img read more

Health group urges overhaul of US food safety system

first_imgApr 30, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – Calling the US food safety system antiquated and disjointed, a public health advocacy group today urged a major overhaul to make the system stronger, more coherent, and better attuned to today’s major threats. Among near-term steps to address the problems, the report calls for doubling the FDA’s food safety funds over the next 5 years and putting one person in charge of the agency’s food safety programs. For the long term, the nation should move toward consolidating all federal food safety programs in one agency, the group recommends. For example, said Levi, “FSIS agents are required to visually inspect every single one of the 8 billion chickens slaughtered each year. Given that the major threat is Salmonella, an invisible microbe, it’s clear that these expensive procedures are outdated.” Imbalanced fundingWith the divided responsibilities comes imbalanced funding, according to TFAH. It is estimated that 85% of foodborne illness outbreaks involve FDA-regulated products, but the FDA receives much less food safety money than the USDA. This year, for example, FDA’s food safety allocation is $619 million, compared with $1.07 billion for the USDA, the report says. Finally, TFAH recommends that states should be encouraged and given incentives to comply with two voluntary sets of food safety standards, the FDA Food Code and the National Retail Food Regulatory Program. “While it’s very important to look at the system as a whole, it’s really FDA’s program that’s in most dire need of help, due to its dwindling resources,” said Taylor. The agency has lost 20% of its science staff and 600 food inspectors in the past 3 years, the report says. Taylor said existing laws focus mainly on reacting to safety hazards rather than preventing them, and they have promoted the fragmentation of responsibility. The fundamental split is between the USDA, which regulates meat, poultry, and processed egg products, and the FDA, which regulates everything else. Other agencies involved are the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which monitors foodborne illness outbreaks, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which deals with pesticides and toxic chemicals. Besides boosting FDA funding, the nation needs to raise the profile of food safety programs within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), TFAH advises. Further, the FDA has received no additional funds to combat deliberate contamination of the food supply since the Bush administration called for a national food-defense effort in 2004, whereas the USDA has received $150 million, according to the report. Further, it says the government should work toward assigning all food safety functions to a single agency for the sake of effectiveness, responsibility, and accountability. The agency should oversee not only regulation and inspection but also research and surveillance. A first step toward those goals is to at least double the FDA’s food safety funding in the next 5 years, the report says. Apr 30 FDA news release about plan to hire more staff TFAH officials also said food safety generally takes a back seat to drug and medical device safety at the FDA. Outdated lawsOutdated laws are to blame for many of the kinks in the food safety system, according to TFAH. Taylor said the basic principles for regulating animal slaughtering were established in 1906, and the tools for addressing microbial pathogens in food and regulating food imports were set in 1938. Shift from “limited end-product and processing plant inspections” to an emphasis on preventing illnesses throughout the food production process and supply chain. The single agency should include the FSIS; the food functions of the FDA, including CFSAN, CVM, and the FDA’s field staff; and the food safety aspects of the EPA’s pesticide program. To make imported food safer, give food safety agencies the authority and resources to educate foreign regulators and producers about US food safety standards, to require food importers to show the standards are being met, and to inspect foreign establishments and food shipments. TFAH offers several general recommendations for building a “modern food safety system”: Commenting on the FDA announcement, Levi told CIDRAP News, “It appears that a significant portion of those are going to food safety, and that’s very good. The question is whether the budgetary resources will be there to sustain those positions over time, because FDA hasn’t received increases that would sustain those.” Report coincides with FDA hiring planThe TFAH report happened to coincide with today’s FDA announcement that it plans to fill more than 600 new positions and “backfill” 700 others over the next several months. The new staffers, including biologists, medical officers, statisticians, and investigators, are needed to implement the FDA Amendments Act of 2007 and the Food Protection Plan and Import Safety Plan announced last November, the FDA said in a news release. The announcement didn’t say how many of the positions are related to food safety. Apr 30 TFAH news release “FDA’s food functions should be brought together under unified leadership, with a single official, reporting to the [HHS] Secretary, focusing full time on, and being responsible and accountable for, providing food safety leadership nationally and internationally,” the report states. Levi said various bills now in Congress address parts of the TFAH recommendations, but passage of major legislation in this session is unlikely, in his view. Frozen pizza offers a prime example of how responsibilities are oddly divided, the report notes. The FDA regulates frozen pizza—unless cooked meat or poultry toppings make up 2% of the ingredients or more, in which case the FSIS is responsible. The FSIS inspects plants making pepperoni pizza every day, whereas the FDA inspects cheese pizza plants an average of once every 10 years. Taylor said food safety responsibilities are also fragmented within the FDA, in that the Office of Regulatory Affairs, which manages inspectors in the field, is not accountable to the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) and the Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM). “We really haven’t paid attention to giving the food safety agencies, the FDA and USDA [US Department of Agriculture] in particular, the tools to do the job we expect them to do,” said Michael Taylor, research professor of health policy at George Washington University and former administrator of the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). See also: In addition, the placement of the CDC’s foodborne disease surveillance program should be reviewed, the report says. The surveillance program needs to be better aligned with other federal, state, and local efforts in the interest of more timely reporting and improved detection and control of outbreaks. “I’d say the first and most important thing Congress can do is address the funding shortfall at FDA, and that doesn’t require legislation,” he said. Conduct research on emerging threats and up-to-date ways to contain them. Full text of TFAH report The Trust for America’s Health (TFAH), a nonprofit, nonpartisan group based in Washington, DC, issued a report citing a long list of problems, including severe underfunding at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), obsolete laws, a largely reactive approach to safety problems, and the spreading of food safety responsibilities among 15 different federal agencies. “The major problem is that no one person is in charge,” said Jeff Levi, PhD, at a news conference about the report, titled Fixing Food Safety: Protecting America’s Food from Farm-to-Fork. Dec 5, 2007, CIDRAP News story “Report says stingy funding has put FDA in crisis” Nov 6, 2007, CIDRAP News story “US food safety plan calls for FDA recall power”last_img read more

FlixBus mostly brings tourists to Germany from Germany, Austria and Hungary, and the top destination is Dalmatia

first_imgAlthough FlixBus has been on the Croatian market for just over a year, it has become a pioneer in the number of transported passengers. Compared to the summer months of 2016, FlixBus has tripled the number of passengers this season, and the positive trend is also felt globally.Along with the capital Zagreb, the most popular destinations for FlixBus passengers this season were Split, while Rijeka and Pula climbed high on the list of popular destinations. Although the rest of Europe has long embraced this way of traveling, in Croatia FlixBus was just the beginning of all digital newspapers on the market in the traditional bus industry. Travel planning and buying tickets via smartphones, passenger identification via QR code of the purchased online ticket, a network of lines connecting 26 European countries and more than 1.200 destinations available to everyone via a free mobile application or website, passengers are provided with free Wi-Fi, sockets next to the seats, more space between the seats, free luggage, are just part of the travel process that new generations of passengers have embraced from the very beginning.Most passengers are from Germany and Austria, and FlixBus is mostly used by the 18-35 age groupAccording to FlixBus, most tourists come to Croatia, mostly from Germany, Austria, Hungary, Italy, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. “Italy and Slovakia were a complete success this year, primarily because before the summer season we managed to connect Zagreb and Pula with Bratislava and many Italian destinations with Istria. As expected, the top destinations of FlixBus users are the cities in Dalmatia, where Split, Zadar and Šibenik are in the lead. However, we have noticed that trends are changing and we are recording an increase in the number of passengers to Istria and Kvarner, especially from Germany and Austria. The age group that uses our green buses the most is the one between 18-35 years old. Our passengers seek experience, inspiration, but also safety and quality. ” points out Petra Milanović, public relations manager for FlixBus CEE.FlixBus has created the largest international network of lines throughout Europe with over 200.000 daily connections, through 26 European countries in 1.200 destinations, and precisely with a well-developed network of bus lines and connecting destinations across Europe FlixBus makes it easier for tourists to come to Croatia. In the rest of Europe, FlixBus has long been synonymous with bus travel, so positioning and connecting with Croatia is certainly important for our tourism. “It is interesting to note that the length of the trip itself is not an obstacle to traveling by bus and that they focus more on reasonable prices and ease of buying tickets as well as on the service during the trip. And it is precisely technological innovations (FlixBus mobile application, sockets, free internet, integration into Google maps, QR code instead of maps) that make the FlixBus model easily acceptable and “drinkable”Concludes Milanović.By the way, FlixBus expects more than 100 million passengers transported across Europe by the end of the year. The question is how many we can bring to Croatia, especially outside the tourist season. The tools and opportunities are there, and it is up to us to make the most of them.last_img read more

Message to the diaspora: Now is the ideal time to invest in Croatian tourism

first_imgDuring this two-day conference, success stories of returnees who have invested in Croatian tourism will be presented, and Croatian branding, investments in tourist niches such as health and cultural tourism, and innovations in tourism will be discussed.  Director of the Center for the Study of Croatian Emigration Marin Sopta he said that the conference symbolizes the unity of homeland and emigrated Croatia. “We point to the great economic potential of the diaspora and the need for stronger investment by emigrants. If we open a quarrel between the present and the past, we are in danger of losing the future. This must be borne in mind by all those who create divisions in Croatian society. These topics exhaust us emotionally and mentally, so we decided to look to the future. “, Sopta emphasized, at the opening of the International Conference “Emigrant Tourism”, adding that the Government should include the diaspora in the development strategy of the country.  Can our diaspora be one of the opportunities for the development of our economy, tourism, and especially health tourism? It certainly can and must. Our diaspora must be one of our main ambassadors and links to the global market, as it is in other developing and smart countries.  President of the Management Board of PwC Croatia John Gašparac he spoke about the prospects of Croatian tourism. “Challenges in tourism are also opportunities. Tourism is a business that lives on emotions and experiences. We can talk about numbers, but that factor is key. We need to change our view of the world and tourism, and if we succeed, then we can experience exponential growth”, Said Gašparac, noting that the plans we have are good, but that it will take time to implement them. RELATED NEWS: State Secretary at the Ministry of Tourism Tonči Glavina he said that now is the right time to return and invest in Croatia. “Whoever dares to take steps in that direction today will benefit greatly from it. Not only material things are worth living in life; the quality of life and the feeling that you are part of the community are also important, and in Croatia you can do that”Said Glavina, who is also a returnee from the United States.  Precisely with the aim of connecting and sharing experience and knowledge from the diaspora and for the diaspora in Split at the Milesi Palace, on May 17 and 18, 2019, the Second International Conference “Emigrant Tourism” is being organized. “With their return, representatives of the diaspora brought knowledge, technology transfer, modern business methods and best practices in the tourism sector from around the world. Today we are talking about emigrants in tourism, but we want to encourage cooperation and participation of the diaspora in all strategic sectors of the Croatian economy. In the whole process, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce wants to be a central contact point, support and partner for all representatives of its diaspora who are looking for business opportunities and opportunities.”, Said Ivan Barbaric, Vice President of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce for International Affairs and the EU.center_img Joe Basic he commented on the growth of his company MPG, with about 150 people today and the transfer of knowledge from Canada to Croatia. “We have been working on the Ultra project for ten years, and today it is visited by more than 150.000 people from more than 150 countries, which is an excellent promotion of Croatia. This is the right time to start a business in Croatia because the risks are the lowest since we founded the country. Croatia invites you to come back and realize your dreams and business ideas “, pointed out Basic. Marion Duzich, owner and director of the Waterman Svpetrvs hotel on Brač, emphasized that everything in business comes down to a quality product and quality people. “Of course, it is also important that they pay you for that quality. I practically came to Croatia to retire – I didn’t even know where Brac was, and in the end I invested in tourism because I believe in this country and these people. It is not easy to do business in Croatia. There are bad days, I spent a lot of money and nerves, but today I have 600 workers. Now we are tormented by the problem of labor, it takes us a lot of time”, Said Duzich and called on the government to facilitate the import of foreign workers.  WILL WE FINALLY INTRODUCE THE SLOVENIAN MODEL FOR IMPORTING FOREIGN WORKERS FROM NEXT YEAR? You can find out more about the conference and the program HERE According to the CNB, the diaspora sends over 2 billion euros a year to Croatia, which is a share of about five percent of Croatia’s GDP. However, the mentioned amount is without real investments in our economy, and for which there is great interest. The Diaspora wants to primarily invest and help, but we can never connect the dots and establish a quality dialogue. We have been spinning in a circle for years, without real progress.  Waterman Svpetrvs hotel on Braclast_img read more