The International Tourism Fair in Spain (FITUR), taking place on January 18-22 in Madrid, comprises a number of events organized by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). Activities will have a special focus on sustainable tourism, including the official presentation of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017 on January 18.
UNWTO has prepared a number of events to be held at FITUR, starting with the presentation of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017 on January 18. Also on January 18 the 13th Edition of the UNWTO Awards on Innovation and Excellence in Tourism will commend some of the best examples of sustainable tourism around the world. Preceding the ceremony on January 16, the Awards Forum will serve to present the 12 projects shortlisted from 139 initiatives that were received from 55 countries.
In addition to the presentation of the International Year and the UNWTO Awards, more than 20 ministers of tourism from Africa will debate the opportunities that the sector can bring to the continent. The Tourism Investment and Business Forum for Africa (INVESTOUR) will focus on the role of sustainable tourism to foster social inclusion and prosperity. The Forum, organized in cooperation with Casa Africa, will this year include two round tables: ‘Technology and design of new touristic products’ and ‘Capacity development for youth and women in tourism.’
The potential of tourism in the MENA region will also be examined during FITUR through a ministerial discussion forum jointly organized by UNWTO and Casa Árabe. The event will focus on sustaining growth and strengthening the resilience of tourism in the Middle East and North Africa.
About The International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development
12 months to celebrate and promote the contribution of the tourism sector to building a better world. This is the major goal of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017 that will start in few days.
The United Nations General Assembly declared 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development recalling the potential of tourism to advance the universal 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The International Year aims to support a change in policies, business practices and consumer behavior towards a more sustainable tourism sector than can contribute effectively to the SDGs.
"This is a unique opportunity to build a more responsible and committed tourism sector that can capitalize its immense potential in terms of economic prosperity, social inclusion, peace and understanding, cultural and environmental preservation” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai.
Accounting for 7% of worldwide exports, one in eleven jobs and 10% of the world’s GDP, the tourism sector if well managed can foster inclusive economic growth, social inclusiveness and the protection of cultural and natural assets.
The International Year will promote tourism’s role in the following five key areas:
(1) Inclusive and sustainable economic growth;
(2) Social inclusiveness, employment and poverty reduction;
(3) Resource efficiency, environmental protection and climate change;
(4) Cultural values, diversity and heritage; and
(5) Mutual understanding, peace and security.
The presentation of the International Year will take place in Madrid on 18 January 2017 on the occasion of the Spanish Tourism Fair, FITUR.
UNWTO invites all partners to join the celebrations by sharing their activities and initiatives to advance sustainable tourism for development at www.tourism4development2017.org
(Source: UNWTO Press Releases)