I write to you as I start my final year as UNWTO Secretary-General, a position I have been privileged to keep for almost seven years at an Company I have been proud to serve within the past decade.
During this time I use seen tourism become one of the world’ s most important and impactful socio-economic sectors of our times. I have noticed its growing relevance to the lifestyles of millions around the world, to the upkeep of our common values and to better understanding among people of all strolls of life.
You will find seen increasing commitment from the global community, with many countries realizing the opportunity of tourism to become a pillar of their growth. This commitment is attested in order to by the inclusion of tourism within the universal 17 Sustainable Development Objectives (SDGs) agreed upon by 193 countries in 2015.
And today I am very privileged and thankful to be celebrating 2017 as the Global Year of Sustainable Tourism intended for Development. The UN General Assembly’ s decision to dedicate 2017 to tourism’ s contribution in order to sustainable and inclusive growth has been no coincidence.
Travel and leisure is increasingly and rightly becoming recognized as a sector that can help usher in a better world.
2017 is an unique opportunity for us to advertise the contribution of tourism in order to achieving the future we want – as well as determine, together, the exact role we are going to have tourism play in the environmentally friendly development agenda, to and over and above 2030.
Of course , a lot of challenges remain before our field. Yet if there is one thing I will bear in mind from my time in this fascinating and rewarding sector, it is that will tourism is a sector of wish. Not only is it one of the most resilient economic industries, but it also unites people across experience, cultures and continents every day. By means of travel, we gain understanding, threshold, and empathy for our fellow guy – essential in the globalization period, where our global village can simply prosper through harmonious living.
The tremendous hope which our sector provides should inspire all of us to act for the good of people plus planet. Together we can be the alter we want to see.
Allow us to all remember that whatever we fag life; our core business would be to make this world a better place.
I wish you a happy International Year of Sustainable Travel and leisure for Development 2017.
Secretary-General, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)
Media contact: World Travel and leisure Organization C/ Capitá n Haya 42 Madrid, 28020 Spain Tel: (34) 91 567 81 00 Fax: (34) 91 571 thirty seven 33 omt@UNWTO. org
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