Country for PR: United Kingdom
Contributor: PR Newswire Europe
Wednesday, June 08 2022 - 09:14
Saudi Arabia Hosts UN Meeting On Tourism Recovery, Agrees Steps To Strengthen Sector For Resilience, Sustainability & Prosperity
JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia, June 7, 2022 /PRNewswire-AsiaNet/ --

- Saudi Arabia hosts largest UNWTO Executive Council meeting since pandemic 
- UNWTO Secretary General and Ministers praise Saudi focus on tourism
- UNWTO agenda focuses on key global issues in tourism

Saudi Arabia hosted the official opening of the 116th UNWTO Executive Council 
Meeting today, a powerful vehicle that brings together global tourism leaders 
to shape the future of the sector.

As First Vice Chair of the UNWTO Executive Council, His Excellency Ahmed Al 
Khateeb discussed with global leaders how tourism must be a key part of a 
stronger and more sustainable world and called for greater collaboration to 
accelerate the sector's recovery.

His Excellency Ahmed Al Khateeb, Minister of Tourism, Saudi Arabia, commented: 
"Tourism is a vital driver of growth, opportunity, and development and today, 
we are at global cross-roads. Our sector could create 58 million jobs in 2022, 
to reach more than 330 million, just 1% below pre-pandemic levels. This can 
only be achieved with strong leadership, a clear vision, and resources. 

"Tourism's restart in many countries around the world offers a unique chance to 
rethink tourism governance, communications and beyond. We have an incredible 
opportunity to set a new way forward, to create a strong future for the global 
tourism sector, and we must seize it."

Adopting the Meeting agenda, Member States welcomed the report on current 
trends in international tourism provided by UNWTO Secretary General Zurab 
Pololikashvili alongside UNWTO monitoring reports and tools developed since the 
outbreak of COVID-19.

UNWTO Secretary-General, His Excellency Zurab Pololikashvili, and His 
Excellency Siandou Fofana, Minister of Tourism of Côte d' Ivoire and Chair of 
the UNWTO Executive Council, said: "It is our joint responsibility to shape a 
more sustainable tourism sector. We must re-think tourism development, 
re-invent tourism destinations and businesses and re-build the whole of the 
tourism eco-system. The 116th UNWTO Executive Council is where we come together 
to take the first steps towards this ambitious but vital goal. Thank you, Saudi 
Arabia, for enabling us to meet in person and kick-start this journey."

The two-day meeting, held in the historical city of Jeddah, is the biggest 
in-person, Executive Council meeting held since the pandemic began. Aimed at 
fostering strong coordination between member states to boost the recovery of 
global tourism, the meeting demonstrated the Executive Council's determination 
to adopt a joined-up approach.

His Excellency was joined in Jeddah by Ministers and representatives from 35 
Member States of the Executive Council, alongside global tourism leaders and 
private sector decision-makers.

Ministry of Tourism of Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Tourism leads the Saudi Tourism ecosystem, with 
support from the Saudi Tourism Authority and the Tourism Development Fund.
The Ministry sets the Kingdom's tourism sector strategy and is responsible for 
the development of policies and regulations, developing human capital, 
gathering statistics, and attracting investment.  It works in partnership with 
the Saudi Tourism Authority, which promotes Saudi Arabia as a global tourism 
destination, and the Tourism Development Fund, which executes the Ministry's 
investment strategy by providing funding for the sector's development.

Headed by His Excellency Ahmed Al Khateeb, the Ministry was founded in February 
2020, following the opening of Saudi Arabia to international leisure tourists 
for the first time in its history in 2019.  Saudi Arabia aims to welcome 100 
million tourism visits by 2030, increasing the sector's contribution to GDP 
from 3% to 10%.

About the United Nations World Tourism Organization 
The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is the United Nations agency responsible 
for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible 

As the leading international organization in the field of tourism, UNWTO 
promotes tourism as a driver of economic growth, inclusive development and 
environmental sustainability and offers leadership and support to the sector in 
advancing knowledge and tourism policies worldwide.

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Source: Ministry of Tourism of Saudi Arabia