WTTC meet: ‘Open Mind, World’ theme

19th Jan 2006

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has set the agenda for its sixth Global Travel & Tourism Summit on April 10.Speaking during a press conference, WTTC Chairman Vincent Wolfington said, “The United States is the world’s largest single travel and tourism economy, making it a fitting place for us to frame the most significant issues facing our industry.” WTTC President Jean-Claude Baumgarten added.

“Our site choice was quite deliberate, and we are delighted to be welcomed here.”

The annual gathering of the CEO-level group will take place April 10-12, 2006, at the Washington Convention Center.

This year’s theme, “Open Mind, Open World” conveys the need to encourage cultural exchange, to promote better understanding between nations, and to bolster economies through increased business and leisure travel.

The summit’s agenda will reflect topical issues surrounding travel, and the far-reaching economic impact the travel and tourism industry has on a wide range of business sectors.


Baumgarten noted that although the global travel and tourism industry last year generated more than 10 percent of the global GDP, its collective heft and impact are not widely understood.

Therefore, he said, the influential WTTC is holding six sessions across three days to generate discussion between industry leaders, government officials, and the media.

Topics range from the effects of aging populations to the promises of new technology, and the challenges of travel in a post-Sept. 11 world.

“Our industry created more than 200 million jobs last year,” said Baumgarten.

“We affect economies and lives in thousands of ways. Our industry is truly a force for social change and sustainable development.”

Washington Mayor Anthony A. Williams and Greek Tourism Minister, Dimitris Avramopoulos, joined Baumgarten for the announcement today.


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