The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the Republic of Korea are teaming up to sponsor a series of tourism projects in the least developed countries of the Asia-Pacific region.UNWTO Secretary-General Francesco Frangialli today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Korean Tourism Minister Kim Myung Gon launching the new collaboration programme.
The projects will focus on activities that help transfer technical tourism knowledge to developing countries in the region through new training programmes, particularly in the areas of marketing, promotion and research.
Seoul already hosts the headquarters of UNWTO’s ST-EP Foundation - dedicated to poverty alleviation through tourism - and helped start the foundation with an initial grant of US$5 million.
“I am delighted by this new initiative from the Republic of Korea, as well as their continued support for the ST-EP Foundation. It is evidence of Korea’s serious commitment to tourism, not only as a way of boosting its national economy, but also as a way of contributing to the prosperity of the entire region,” said Mr. Frangialli.
While in Korea, the Secretary-General also held talks with Korean President Roh Moo-Hyun and Foreign Minister Ban Ki-Moon aimed at solidifying bi-lateral relations between the UN specialized agency and the Republic of Korea.
The leaders discussed ways that tourism can effectively assist in economic development, as well as how tourism can help improve international understanding and build peace in the global community.