At the beginning of the annexation, the Russian authorities have talked a lot about the development of Crimean resorts. In practice all turned out differently. Recreational sector of the Peninsula dropped to 15-20 years ago. Sanctions, logistics and infrastructure issues significantly affected the price and quality of services — it is, as before, is relatively low. The cynicism of the situation is that the Federal government is interested in the gradual elimination of the resort potential of the Republic. In their plans for Crimea plays the role of a military base, and not the territory of active rest and recovery.
In Association of tour operators of Russia reported that next summer the Crimea may be left without tourists at all. Vacationers from Russia will prefer to go to Turkey and perhaps Egypt. The Association noted that the Crimean hoteliers went into last holiday season with high expectations, raising the cost of leisure. In the middle of last summer they had to reduce prices, but it was too late: tourists by the time decided on the place and purchased tours to other hotels. This year, the situation could be repeated, but with heavy losses for the industry. Last year, the Crimean resorts had to compete with Russian for political reasons, Turkey and Egypt for the Russians was closed. In 2017 will be much harder — now the alternative to the resorts of the southern Crimea can become Antalya and, perhaps, Sharm El-Sheikh.
Hope for a Russian “patriotism” makes no sense. He has already become an occasion for jokes and bad jokes. After the incident with the downed Russian su-24, the Kremlin announced high-profile boycott Turkish hotels, but lasted he long. After Ankara allegedly apologized to Moscow, restrictions on travel were removed. Russian inhabitants, forgetting about “knife in the back”, rushed to buy trips to Turkish resorts than rather annoyed the Crimean public. Local officials and businessmen had already wanted to “replace” the Mediterranean resorts of Evpatoria or Saki.
The demand for the summer season of 2017 is already under way, but the owners of some Crimean objects still have not put up prices. Experts of the Russian Association of tour operators reported that now the demand for Anapa exceeds the number of bookings of tours on the annexed Peninsula. If the trend continues, this year the flow will be lower than last year. We will remind, at the end of the 2016 season the Crimean “authorities” announced the increase in the number of tourists.
Core Republican “Minister” Sergei strelbitskiy counted more than 5 million people. A lie from first word to the last. At best, the Peninsula was visited by about one million tourists. In previous years, approximately 4.5 million people traveled to the Crimea by rail, the airport of Simferopol gave a flow of approximately 0.5 million. The rest traveled by road transport. Now there are only planes and cars. Even with the inflated numbers provided by the airport administration and operation of the ferry, 5.5 million tourists a year — an unrealistic figure. Against this background, the blatant stupidity of the statements look the head of “state Council” Vladimir Konstantinov about the intention to receive 10 million tourists by 2019.
Over the Crimean resorts dominates the old problem of high prices and low service. But after the annexation of significant importance is given to other factors. Theoretically Moscow for several years can increase the flow of tourists to the Peninsula. But for this Federal government will have to meet a number of critical tasks.
The first is to remove or significantly reduce Western sanctions, imposed in response to the annexation of the Ukrainian territory. Otherwise, European and even Russian companies refuse to invest in a gray area, which is currently the Crimea. From the point of view of international financial institutions, annexed the Peninsula is “toxic” areas. This approach implies that foreign businessmen dangerous to work there, even incognito, using “company-pads”. The American Ministry of Finance, as practice has shown, quickly overrides any loopholes to circumvent the restrictions.
The second is to achieve a stable and even excess the Peninsula with energy. Resort of a new generation in need of complete modernization of the Crimean infrastructure, which is impossible without Western technology. Over the years, plenty of oil, the Russian authorities buried the actual industry. It got to the point that the cable is the proverbial “bridge” at the bottom of the Kerch Strait was putting the Chinese company. Again it depends on the lifting of sanctions and the delivery of the imported equipment.
The third is to force Ukraine to put water in the North Crimean canal, to remove food and railway blockade. Without Ukrainian tourists, goods and food quality operation of health resorts in the Crimea is impossible.
Actually, a lot more problems, but we have outlined the main ones. In the present circumstances, the Kremlin is unable to solve any of these problems. There is no indication that the Americans and the Europeans will remove the Crimean sanctions or soften them. Ukraine will not refuse legitimate claims to their territory. Therefore, blockade of the Peninsula will continue. By the way, the Russian authorities have no illusions. Peninsula residents can tell on TV or anything, but it is obvious that Moscow is not interested in the development of the Crimea as a recreational region. The Kremlin has put on this cross. President Vladimir Putin and his team are only interested in a military component — the Peninsula is definitely turning into a huge database.
There is reason to believe that some of the top bloggers with the filing of the presidential administration launched a campaign on discrediting the Crimean resorts. A typical case occurred last summer with the famous Moscow Internet activist and businessman Ilya Varlamov. He visited the Crimea and wrote a series of reportages, dedicated to the holiday season in the occupied Peninsula. The meaning of his publications fit into one sentence: in Crimea everything is bad, no tourists, the service is lousy, around the dirt and hopelessness, but it will be even worse. Citizens of Russia as if trying to convince that the Crimea and civilized vacation — are incompatible. And supposedly not the fault of the Federal authorities, who seized the piece of foreign territory, and “greedy” Crimean entrepreneurs.