Poland’s restrictions-hit areas seek help to revive tourism

Category: Business


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. key / ki / (adj.) – very important

    The findings of the survey are key in coming up with an effective marketing plan.

  2. hobble / ˈhɒb əl / (v.) – to make it difficult for something or someone to move or progress

    Some poor children who want to finish school are hobbled by poverty.

  3. subsidized / ˈsʌb sɪˌdaɪzd / (adj.) – referring to a cost that’s partly paid by a government or an organization to keep the price low

    The government provided subsidized housing for low-income families.

  4. destabilize / diˈsteɪ bəˌlaɪz / (v.) – to cause problems that would make something, such as a government, unable to exist or work as normal

    The rebel groups attacked several cities to destabilize the government.

  5. grudgingly / ˈgrʌdʒ ɪŋ li / (adv.) – unwillingly

    He grudgingly obeyed his mother and turned off his computer even if he was still playing a video game.


Read the text below.

Authorities in Poland’s eastern regions bordering Belarus appealed to the government to help them revive the key tourism sector hobbled by access restrictions following a migrant crisis.

The center of the appeal was Bialowieza, a popular tourist venue touted as Europe’s last pristine forest that hosts bison, moose, wildcat and many other animal species.

Tourism-related businesses in the area say they’re suffering and temporary government assistance isn’t enough. They urged the government to issue subsidized coupons to draw tourists back to the area.

“From the point of view of business the situation is tragic,” said Marek Czerny of the Bialowieski Hotel. “In July we have only 10% of rooms booked, while a year ago it was 60%.”

July 1 marked the lifting of a seven-month ban on general access to areas within 5 kilometers (3 miles) from the Belarus border.

The ban prevented everyone except local residents from entering the area where thousands of migrants are pushed by Belarus into Poland, according to Polish authorities. Poland has said the plan was to destabilize the region and the EU.

Eugeniusz Lawreniuk, deputy head of the local “Bialowieza Forest Region” tourist group said nothing has changed and invited tourists to discover the region for themselves.

Poland has in recent months built a metal barrier along part of the border with Belarus to curb migrant arrivals. Local organizations say the wall has had a negative impact on tourism, although they grudgingly accept it.

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • According to Czerny of the Bialowieski Hotel, only 10% of their rooms were booked in July this year, while they had 60% last year. How do you think tourist destinations can attract more people again? Discuss.
  • After being hit hard by the pandemic, do you think regions relying on tourism for their livelihood should keep depending on it, or should they start finding a different source of income? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • Local organizations say the wall has had a negative impact on tourism, although they grudgingly accept it. Why do you think the organizations grudgingly accept the metal barrier? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, what should the authorities do to migrants that entered illegally into their country? Discuss.