Breaking down barriers to travel has been the focus of PATA discussions
with tourism ministers and senior government advisors from 21 APEC
destinations. ATA Director-Strategic Intelligence Centre Mr John
Koldowski engaged in the top-level talks during the APEC tourism ministerial
meetings and working group sessions in Hoi An, Vietnam, October 12-19.
“This was a unique opportunity for
direct dialogue with the government leaders of travel and tourism across the
region,” said Mr Koldowski. “We raised and discussed issues that are critical
to our members, such as the need for more equitable taxation policies and the
judicious liberalisation of air services agreements.”
Mr Koldowski first met with ministers and
advisors at an informal retreat and then gave a presentation during the
plenary session of the ministerial meeting. He said it was the ideal forum for the Association to embrace a PATA Industry Council recommendation to
lobby governments regionally to stem the rapid spread of taxation on
tourism, which represents an increasing barrier to trade.
In addition, PATA tabled The Economic
Impact of Air Service Liberalisation, a report released jointly by PATA,
Boeing and other member organisations, which highlights the multiple economic
benefits of ‘open skies’ policies. The Association also tabled
the PATA / Visa International study on travel intentions to demonstrate the
influence of government-issued travel advisories on consumer attitudes to
travel and tourism.