Only few weeks ahead of the official launch of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017, set to take place on the 18 of January 2017 in Madrid, Spain, representatives from various tourism industries and beyond have joined UNWTO to support the celebrations of this important event.
The United Nations 70th General Assembly has designated 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development. In the context of the universal 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 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 that contributes to the SDGs.
The Ministry of Tourism of Mexico, the German National Tourism Board, All Nippon Airways, the Global Tourism Economy Research Centre, Macao, China, the Balearic Islands Tourism Agency, Minube, Amadeus, the European Geoparks Network, The Travel Corporation and DDB are among the first sponsors to join UNWTO to support the programme of activities of the Year. The City of Zurich, the University of Crete, CABI and Green Key have also joined as “Friends” of the Year.
“The International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, to be launched in January in Madrid, is a unique opportunity to raise awareness on the contribution of sustainable tourism to development among public and private sector decision-makers and the general public, while mobilizing all stakeholders to work together in making tourism a catalyst for positive change,” said UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai.
The 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
(5) Mutual understanding, peace and security.
A full programme of activities will be unveiled on 18 January on the occasion of the Opening of the International Year.