Celebrating the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development

2017 has been declared as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development by United Nations. The declaration recalls the potential of tourism sector to advance the universal 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The #IY2017 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.

2017 presents a unique opportunity to explore and highlight tourism’s potential to help transform our world into a place of prosperity and well being for all.

It is a unique opportunity to advance the contribution of the tourism sector to the three pillars of sustainability – economic, social and environmental, while raising awareness of the true dimensions of a sector which is often undervalued.UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai

As one of the largest and fastest-growing socio-economic sectors of our times, tourism can stimulate economic growth, create decent jobs and business opportunities, helping millions of people escape poverty and improve their livelihoods. The tourism sector accounts for 7% of worldwide exports, 10% of the world’s GDP and one in eleven jobs. Even then this sector is almost ignored as a mainstream economic portfolio in many countries and societies. If managed well, it can foster inclusive economic growth, social inclusiveness and protection of natural and cultural assets.

Inclusive and sustainable economic growth

  • 4% or more annual increase in international tourist arrivals since 2009
  • 7% of total world exports and 30% of world services exports
  • US$ 1.5 trillion in exports from international tourism in 2015
  • 10% of world GDP

Social inclusiveness, employment and poverty reduction

  • One in every eleven jobs globally
  • Largest export category in many developing countries
  • 57% of international tourist arrivals in 2030 will be in emerging economies
  • Almost twice as many women employers as other sectors

Resource efficiency, environmental protection and climate change

  • Committed to reducing its 5% of world CO2 emissions
  • Raises financing for conservation of heritage, wildlife and the environment
  • Can be a vehicle for protecting and restoring biodiversity
  • Must sustainably manage an expected 1.8 billion international tourists in 2030

Cultural values, diversity and heritage

  • Revives traditional activities and customs
  • Empowers communities and nurtures pride within them
  • Promotes cultural diversity
  • Raises awareness of the value of heritage

Mutual understanding, peace and security

  • Breaks down barriers and builds bridges between visitors and hosts
  • Provides opportunities for cross-cultural encounters that can build peace
  • A resilient sector that recovers quickly from security threats
  • A tool for soft diplomacy

This mandate of declaring 2017 as International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development is an initiative to make tourism as a prevailing medium for economic growth, culture preservation and social stability.

We, at Born2C, are glad with the declaration and look forward to making ideas happen for Sustainable Tourism.

Some text & content from tourism4development2017.org

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