Tourist Competitiveness of Polish Rural Areas
Purpose: The process of diversifying economic activity in rural areas and incorporating new non-agricultural and non-production functions into the rural space is currently one of the key determinants of development in these areas. A comparative assessment of Poland's competitiveness against selected European countries has been made in the study. The main objective was to present the conditions of international tourist competitiveness of rural areas in Poland in comparison to other European areas. Design/Methodology/Approach: An in-depth analysis of Poland's competitiveness as a tourist region against the European countries was carried out taking into consideration individual indicators of the second pillar. The study uses a synthetic tourist competitiveness index and panel regression to demonstrate the determinants of this phenomenon. Findings: On the basis of the conducted research, it has been shown that the natural and landscape value of Poland's agricultural areas is highly assessed on a European scale. Therefore, for many consumers in the European Union, Poland is increasingly seen as an attractive region for tourists. At the same time, the importance of these factors in the demand for tourist places has been demonstrated by distinguishing selected aspects of these conditions. Economic factors affecting internal demand as well as environmental and institutional conditions turned out to be the key ones. Practical Implications: The presented considerations are of great importance for practical reasons. They constitute an indicator which, under certain conditions can influence the increase of tourist competitive attractiveness of rural areas in an international perspective. Therefore, they allow to indicate the proper structure of investments and activities aimed at valuing public goods by both private and public entities. Originality/Value: The development of rural areas in the current conditions requires the development of non-agricultural and non-production functions. The article indicates the importance of individual resources and conditions in the proposed model. Not only was their role emphasized, but mutual relations between the factors considered were determined.