Industry Update
Press Release18 January 2021

Madrid Set To Host Key Week For Global Tourism

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United nations World Tourism Organization (WTO)

The global tourism sector is starting the new year prepared to #RestartTourism when conditions allow, with the World Tourism Organization set to again bring together leaders from across the public and private sectors. Tomorrow in Madrid, the UNWTO Global Tourism Crisis Committee will hold its first meeting of the year. This meeting to advance concrete plans to ensure the restart of tourism will take place in the context of the UNWTO Executive Council.

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Today (18 January), the Global Tourism Crisis Committee, established by UNWTO at the very start of the pandemic as a means to unite the sector and lead a strong and consistent response to the crisis, will meet for the first time this year. Taking advantage of the Executive Council celebrated the following day and hosted by Spain, this meeting will be a hybrid event, combining in-person and virtual participation. Once again, the Committee will bring together tourism leaders from around the world, as well as UN agencies and representatives from civil society and the private sector.

Key issues on the agenda include exploring how vaccines against COVID-19 can be part of a harmonized approach to restarting tourism, including through the potential use of health passports and other measures. UNWTO will also call on members of the Committee to join forces for a global campaign aimed at restoring confidence in tourism.

Executive Council meets for 113th Session

During the 113th session of the UNWTO Executive Council (19 January), representatives of the 35 Council members will be provided with updates on the implementation of the UNWTO Programme of Work and plans for 2021. The Executive Council will also explore current tourism trends, including the impact of the ongoing pandemic on the sector and what this means for livelihoods and tourism's contribution to sustainable development. This hybrid event expects 150 in-person participants.

The Executive Council meeting will also include the election for the position of UNWTO Secretary-General for the term 2022-2025. Incumbent Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili has made himself available for re-election for a second term, while the Kingdom of Bahrain has nominated Shaikha Mai bint Mohammed Al Khalifa for the position.

About The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), a United Nations specialized agency, is the leading international organization with the decisive and central role in promoting the development of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism. It serves as a global forum for tourism policy issues and a practical source of tourism know-how. Its membership includes 159 countries, 6 territories, 2 permanent observers and over 500 Affiliate Members.

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