The city of Luxor in Egypt is hosting the 104th meeting of the executive council of the World Tourism Organisation today.
The meeting will discuss the three priorities of the organisation for 2016-2017: safe, secure and seamless travel; the impact of technology in the tourism sector; and sustainability.
Attending the session are some 170 representatives from 40 countries, including 11 ministers and vice ministers of tourism – from Argentina, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Costa Rica, Egypt, India, Japan, Republic of Korea; Serbia, Sudan, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The opening ceremony was presided over by UNWTO secretary general, Taleb Rifai, and the minister of tourism of Egypt, Mohamed Yehia Rashed.
“Egypt is a worldwide leader in tourism and will continue to be so.
“The high level of attendance at this meeting is a confirmation of the confidence of the international tourism community in Egypt.
“Supporting tourism to Egypt is supporting its future and that of the Egyptian people” said Rifai.
The council will also discuss the programme of work of the organisation and the agenda for the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017.
“In many our nations, tourism employs a large part of our labour force and helps to create immense benefits to our communities.
“The International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017 is a unique opportunity to work together in maximising the contribution of our sector to protect the environment and cultural heritage,” said minister Rashed.
Speaking on the importance of promoting a safe, secure and seamless travel framework, the Minister added: “We must commit to global efforts and work on restoring confidence in destinations affected by any crises namely by working with the media.”
The 105th Session of the UNWTO executive council will take place in May 2017 in Spain, host country of the organisation.