With a past and a present linked to tourism and to the industry, SINES – Turismo Industrial Sustentável [Sustainable Industrial Tourism] is the brand created to award corporate identity to the Aportar project, which will revive the industrial heritage and strengthen local historical heritage, make active industrial units more profitable, reinvent the notion of being from Sines, helping the population rediscover their roots, and make both the past and the present part of their cultural identity.
This is also an opportunity to strengthen the image of social responsibility and sustainability of the Municipal industries, to dispel prejudice regarding their environmental behaviour, turning them into an asset for tourism development in this territorial region.
The interaction between industry, culture, tourism and the territory, contributes towards sustainable development – including tourism -, towards promoting the quality of life of the local population, and towards asserting a tourist destination par excellence.
How did the project Aportar Sines emerge?
Led by the Municipal Council of Sines, the project Aportar Sines emerged in parallel with the academic research undertaken as part of a doctoral thesis, which aims at creating and empowering a network of partners for tourist productization based on industrial resources, while developing a platform to make available the assets related to the industrialization process in Sines, and allow visitors to visit local industrial production facilities.
This platform, co-funded by INALENTEJO, is the actual fulfilment of the project.
What are the goals of the project?
- To develop and assert Industrial Tourism in the Municipality of Sines, aligning industry and tourism as a differentiated and competitive product, as part of a partnership process between public and private players.
- To promote the Municipality of Sines as an Industrial Tourism destination, designing a physical and virtual strategy that allows visitors to have a previous contact and plan their own visit in an autonomous way.
- Articulate the Industrial Tourism project in the Municipality of Sines with other existing Industrial Tourism projects in the Alentejo and in the country.
- Integrate the Municipality of Sines in the international networks of Industrial Tourism in order to attract the interest of foreign visitors, and assert this territorial region as an Industrial Tourism destination.
Present and Future
Galp Energia was the first institution to show interest and willingness for the Sines Refinery to become the subject of a pilot tourist productization experience, based on the industrial resources of Sines. This expression of interest culminated in the opening of this industrial infrastructure to visitors between October and December 2014, proving to be a real success, translated in filling all the vacancies planned for this stage of the project, and in the high level of satisfaction expressed by visitors.
In the meantime, other companies in the Sines Ecosystem have joined the project, and, in addition to the Refinery of Galp Energia, it is currently possible to also visit the EDP Thermal Power Plant, the Port of Sines (APS), REN, Recipneu, Enerfuel and Docapesca.
The idea is to extend the project to other companies in the Sines Ecosystem, to create a Welcome Centre, involving other public and private partners, thus creating opportunities for companies and entrepreneurs related to tourism, linking up this product with other tourism products that exist in this area, increasing its attractiveness and competitiveness, and contributing toward fighting seasonality, one of the main threats to sustainable tourism development.