According to the TOMAS summer 2017 survey, seven percent of tourists visit Croatia motivated by health reasons, while almost eight percent come for wellness. Tourists spend 20-30% more in health tourism than the average guest, and Croatia has all the predispositions for year-round tourism through health tourism. “Health tourism is the fastest growing part of the tourism industry, growing annually at a rate of 15 to 20 percent. In this segment, Croatia has an extremely strong resource base and rich tradition. It is a product that is not related to the sun and the sea and as such has a strong impact on the extension of the tourist season, both on the coast and on the continent. I am sure of the positive effects of the ESPA conference, which brought together many foreign experts who will exchange examples of good practice with their Croatian colleagues when it comes to this type of tourist offer.”, Said the director of the CNTB Kristjan Staničić, adding how Representatives of this growing tourism niche, with revenues at the EU level of more than 47 billion euros, gathered in Terme Tuhelj at the annual congress of the European SPA Association (ESPA), which takes place from 8 to 10 May, co-organized by the Croatian Chamber of Commerce and the CNTB partnership. Spas and medical wellness services in many European countries account for up to 25 percent of tourism revenue. Also, they are the drivers of the economic development of the regions, they employ the local population and work all year round, and the guests of health and health tourism achieve above-average consumption and stay longer than average. “The potential for the development of health tourism for year-round operations is exceptional, therefore it is included as part of the Strategy for the Development of Croatian Tourism until 2020. , “Said Assistant Minister of Tourism Olivera Šarić, emphasizing that through cooperation at congresses like this we learn about best practices since each country has something special and indigenous to offer to its guest. The aim of the event is to follow new trends and innovations in the field of health tourism, through the presentation of best practices and new niche markets in spa, spa and wellness tourism. The event brings together representatives of 21 European countries, and during the congress, awards will be presented “ESPA Innovation Awards“For the innovation of medical wellness and spa hotel providers, as very important references in health tourism. “We see health tourism as a great chance to strengthen the off-season offer, extend the tourist season and attract guests of higher purchasing power. In order to achieve greater competitiveness of Croatian health tourism, it is crucial to intensify marketing activities in order to strengthen the image of Croatia as a destination for health tourism. The second thing is new investments, ie construction of new and renovation of existing capacities. In this way, we are approaching the possibility of obtaining international certificates, which are key to increasing the number of foreign guests,”Said the Vice President of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce for Agriculture and Tourism Dragan Kovacevic on the occasion of the opening of the Congress of Health Tourism of the European SPAS Association (ESPA).