The International RAIA TERMAL Congress “Termalismo 2021-2027: dinamización de los territorios y reto demográfico” was celebrated in Ourense on the 17th and 18th of September. It focused its presentations and debates on the role of spas in the socio-economic development of the territories in which they are located.

An international event that has become a space for reflection on the search for formulas of cooperation to maintain and increase the contribution of the thermal sector and the natural heritage to the economies of the small town councils in which most of the spa facilities are located.

The Congress highlighted the social value of the sector as well as the importance of the economic activity it generates. A sector that allows to fix population and employment in its territorial scopes, rural spaces that, in many occasions, present demographic imbalances to which the thermal economy can help to fight.

A “demographic challenge” derived from realities such as population dispersion, aging or low birth rate, these aspects have been considered among the criteria to fix the next distribution of European funds for the 2021-2027 programming period, financing that could be used by the thermal territories that should promote the conservation and use of the fluvial environments.

It has been an international appointment with vocation to make visible the role of the spas, the thermal facilities and of the natural patrimony in the rural economies.