WTTC Global Summit 2015: Global Travel Association Coalition puts forward agenda

WTTC Global Summit 2015: Global Travel Association Coalition puts forward agenda

Leading private sector and government tourism organisations - the Global Travel Association Coalition - have today launched a commitment for aligned advocacy and action to harness the full potential of the sector to create jobs, drive inclusive growth and foster development.

Launched at the World Travel & Tourism Council Global Summit in Madrid ‘Powering Travel & Tourism into the Next Decade: An Agenda for Growth and Development,’ is a landmark manifesto setting forth the key areas of action necessary to ensure travel and tourism contributes to consolidate the global economic recovery, increase resource efficiency and create decent jobs and inclusive economic opportunities.

The members of GTAC commit to work with a coordinated approach, with governments and the private sector, to advance travel facilitation, infrastructure development, environmental sustainability and investment in human capital.

The agenda’s objectives will be addressed through:

  • Continued research-based evidence on the value and impact of travel and the impact of policy shifts.
  • Speaking as one to promote the agenda’s implementation and ensure tourism can be an effective driver of inclusive economic growth and sustainable development.
  • Calling on governments to agree to national tourism policies that bring together all relevant government agencies while creating or strengthening public/private sector cooperation and public/public coordination of tourism planning and development at all levels.

The agenda lays out testimony on the conditions for these four critical issues and defines the following calls to action:

On travel facilitation, the GTAC calls for: 

  • Policies to facilitate international tourism and thus export growth which generates economic and social benefits globally.
  • The expansion of transparent visa processes, visa waiver programmes, regional visa agreements and trusted traveller programmes as well as seamless travel procedures at borders.
  • The use of new technologies to make travel more accessible, convenient, and more efficient while enhancing security.

On infrastructure development, the GTAC calls for:

  • The advancement of air, rail, sea and road connectivity through properly designed regulatory frameworks including measures enabling market and capital access in the context of tourism, transport and trade.
  • Government and private sector co-operation to capitalise on innovative and technological resources for improving and accelerating intermodal and infrastructure development.
  • Setting and strengthening public/private partnerships to assure legislative and funding needs for improvements and expansion of infrastructure.

On environmental sustainability, the GTAC calls for:

  • Interagency coordination in considering and implementing ways to protect the environment while fostering the sector’s growth and its socio-economic benefits for host communities.
  • A higher level of accountability through the development of strong public/private partnerships for the measurement of tourism’s environmental impacts, and evidence-based decision making.
  • Greater investment in innovation, adequate legislation and technological solutions that ensure the sustainability of the sector and minimise adverse environmental and social impacts.

On investment in human capital, the GTAC calls for:

  • Greater co-ordination between governments, the industry and the education sector to assess and address the needs for future talent requirements that meet the forecasted global growth of tourism.
  • The positioning of tourism as a viable career option.
  • The sharing of best practice in and development of training programmes for the sector.

‘Powering Travel & Tourism into the Next Decade: An Agenda for Growth and Development’ was launched at a press conference in Madrid on the behalf of the GTAC by three of the founding members: Tony Tyler, director general of International Air Transport Association; Taleb Rifai, secretary general of the World Tourism Organisation of the United Nations; and David Scowsill, president of World Travel & Tourism Council.

GTAC is currently comprised of the following members: Airports Council International, Cruise Line International Association, International Air Transport Association, International Civil Aviation Organisation, Pacific Asia Travel Association, World Economic Forum, World Tourism Organisation and World Travel & Tourism Council.