With one week left until World Tourism Day (WTD) on 27 September, preparations are on the final stretch in the Maldives, the host of this year’s official celebrations, and in many countries around the world around the 2013 theme, “Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future”.
As the most important international observance day for tourism, WTD 2013 is a worldwide platform to underscore tourism´s responsibility and commitment in ensuring a sustainable water future.
In a special message on the occasion of WTD 2013, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, “This year’s World Tourism Day highlights the responsibility of the tourism industry to safeguard and intelligently manage water. In this International Year of Water Cooperation, I urge tourism establishments to cut consumption and improve waste management and I call on individuals to play their part by making environmentally conscious choices when they travel.”
“World Tourism Day offers a unique opportunity to shine a spotlight on water both as an asset and as a resource and on the actions needed to face up to the water challenge,” said UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai. “I urge all those involved in the tourism sector to join our global World Tourism Day campaign and continue to devise innovate solutions to ensuring tourism contributes to sustainable access to water resources worldwide,” he added.
As part of the WTD celebrations in the Maldives, a high-level Think Tank on Tourism and Water will bring together public and private sector tourism stakeholders, leading experts on water preservation and media experts to debate key issues encompassing the global water challenge.