UNWTO and the Organization of American States (OAS) have signed a cooperation agreement aimed at developing sustainable tourism policies and enhancing the productivity and competitiveness of the tourism sector in the Americas.
The agreement was signed by UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, and OAS Secretary-General, José Miguel Insulza, during the annual meeting of the UNWTO Regional Commission for the Americas (Asunción, Paraguay, 17-18 May 2011).
Both parties have committed to strengthen collaboration, share information and work together on issues of common interest, including training, research and the collation of statistical tourism data.
Mr. Rifai said the agreement would provide mutual benefits to UNWTO and the OAS, as well as their Member States and the broader international tourism community. “The OAS is our natural partner in the Americas, given its mandate to promote the economic, social and cultural development of the region,” he noted. “Through joint projects and activities, this cooperation agreement will allow us to maximize tourism’s contribution to this goal, while at the same time making best use of our resources to support our Member States.”
International tourist arrivals in the Americas reached an all-time high in 2010, growing 7% to 150 million and generating US$ 182 billion in receipts. Results from the first months of 2011 have seen arrivals increase by 5%, in line with the world average.