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HOTREC proposes 10 steps towards a sustainable and responsible “sharing economy” in tourism accommodation

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HOTREC proposes 10 steps towards a sustainable and responsible "sharing economy” in tourism accommodation


Brussels, The Hague – 5 November 2015, Today, the General Assembly of HOTREC, the umbrella association of hotels, restaurants and cafes in Europe, agreed on a policy paper, including the HOTREC Chart towards a sustainable and responsible "sharing” economy in tourism accommodation. The European hospitality industry considers that the current regulatory vacuum is providing ground across Europe for risks in consumer protection and safety, unfair competition, as well as for grey areas of economic activities.

HOTREC’s policy paper highlights key issues which need to be addressed by public authorities and society. These issues include the need of registration and statistical measurement of the activity, ensuring compliance with safety and security, as well as fiscal obligations, protecting employees’ rights and the quality of life of neighborhoods. 

"In the policy paper adopted today, HOTREC is proposing 10 steps towards a sustainable and responsible "sharing” economy. It is now up to the authorities to make the "sharing” economy an integrated model, ensuring consumer safety and security as well as tax income, as does the hospitality industry, which employs 10 million people, and together with tourism represents the 3rd socio-economic activity in Europe” – stressed Christian de Barrin, CEO of HOTREC.

"The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) welcomes this report by HOTREC as an important contribution to the discussions around the ‘sharing economy’ in the tourism sector. The rise of entrepreneurship, the so called ‘sharing economy’ and the driving role of consumers have taken centre stage. While we welcome innovation and entrepreneurship, we must also underline the need for the sector to find progressive solutions to safeguard consumer rights and quality standards while ensuring a level playing field for all businesses.” – said Taleb Rifai, UNWTO Secretary General.

"HOTREC is convinced that "sharing” economy service providers must contribute their part to the overall economy and to society, ensuring, inter alia, guests’ safety and security, interests of neighborhoods of tourist apartments, fair competition vis-à-vis the already regulated accommodation sector, as well as societal interests: first of all proper compliance with fiscal obligations and employees’ rights” - emphasised Ramón Estalella, Chair of HOTREC’s dedicated Task Force to the "sharing” economy.


What is HOTREC?

HOTREC represents the hotel, restaurant and café industry at European level. This industry includes around 1,8 million businesses, of which 99% are small and medium sized enterprises (91% of them micro enterprises, i.e. employing fewer than 10 people). These businesses make up some 59% of industry value added. The hospitality industry provides some 10.2 million jobs in the EU alone. Together with the other tourism industries, the sector is one of the largest industries in Europe. HOTREC brings together 42 national associations representing the sector in 28 different European countries.

For further information:


Christian de Barrin, CEO of HOTREC +32 476 309 960,

Daniel Makay, Public Affairs Manager +32(0)2 504 78 42,