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Current situation and recovery strategies on top of World Tourism Organization (WTO) agenda during FITUR

Travel News Asia 22 January 2003

During this time of uncertainty in the world tourism industry, resulting from the combined effects of the economic downturn and terrorism, the World Tourism Organization (WTO) will take advantage of the largest international tourism fair in Spain, FITUR, to meet with tourism experts in order to reflect on the situation and to take stock of the recovery strategies implemented in different regions and countries.

The first FITUR-related event, the "Second International Conference on Tourism" organized by the Spanish Alliance for Excellence in Tourism (Exceltur), will take place on Monday, 27 January. The President of the Spanish government Mr. Jos Mara Aznar, is expected to attend this  conference during which some twenty CEOs, presidents and other high ranking tourism managers and experts from the public and private sectors will reveal their vision of the current tourism situation. Among them, WTO Secretary-General Mr. Francesco Frangialli will present the WTO stands and the latest tourism trends.

The first preliminary results of the world's tourism performance in 2002 will be released in the course of the same day by Mr. Frangialli and WTO Chief of  Market Intelligence and Promotion, Mr. Augusto Huscar.

Another event to be held on 27 January is the "International Forum: The role of Information Technology in Fostering Tourism Development", supported by Microsoft, the Spanish Government and the World Tourism Organization. Mr. Frangialli and Mr. Jose Antonio Ferreiro, Chief Executive Officer of the WTO Business Council will both participate in this conference.

Mr. Frangialli will also be among the speakers at the opening ceremony of FITUR on 29 January, which will be held under the auspices of H. R. M. King Juan Carlos I of Spain.

A delegation of the Russian Federation, headed by Mr. V.I. Strzhalkovskiy, Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade, will combine their presence at FITUR with a meeting with Mr. Frangialli. As the Russian Federation is now the chairman of WTO Executive Council, the delegation will discuss various activities of the Council and cooperation between WTO and Russia in 2003.

In addition, various WTO events will take place at FITUR at the Convention Centre Parque Ferial Juan Carlos I in Madrid.

WTO Business Council to discuss Recovery Strategies and Public-Private Cooperation After 11 September 

Organized by the WTO Business Council, the seminar "Public-Private Cooperation After 11 September and the Current Tourism Situation: Recovery Strategies" will be held on 30 January. 

Representatives from the public sector of three countries (Spain, Costa Rica and Chile) will present their particular experiences to illustrate this cooperation, as well as recovery strategies and the current tourism situation. Furthermore, three associations that are highly representative of the private sector will discuss the determining factors affecting three especially sensitive areas of the world: the United States, the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific region.

"Let us reflect on the current tourism situation within the framework of cooperation - not confrontation - between the public and private sectors," says Mr. Jose Antonio Ferreiro, Chief Executive  Officer of the WTO Business Council. Such cooperation is a necessary condition for competitiveness and is thus a key objective of the Business Council. In the wake of 11 September, cooperation between the public and private sectors reached an unprecedented degree of cohesion in the design and execution of strategies in response to a scenario that was very different from past crises.

International Network for the Sustainable Development of Coastal Tourism Destinations to be launched at FITUR

WTO is working on setting up this network with the aim of establishing a web-based mechanism for the exchange of experiences and methodologies generated by public and private sector organizations, especially local authorities and destination management organizations, in the sustainable management and development of coastal tourism.

As the first step of this process, a methodological framework has been developed for the network and a survey has been conducted among WTO Members. The project is currently in its second phase, and its first outcome, the Worldwide Guide of Resources for the Management of Coastal Destinations, will be launched during FITUR on 30 January.

Conference organized by the WTO Human Resources Development

The WTO Human Resources Development department will organize a conference at FITUR on 30 January. The first session of the conference will be on "New Advances in Tourism Education and Training: A World Panorama" and the second session on "New Tools for Destination Competitiveness: The  Role of Training, Education and Research in Tourism". A special emphasis will be put on the WTO.Sbest programme for tourism destination competitiveness.  

WTO Press and Communications Section to present Tourcom

WTO will be present at FITUR with its own stand (4A131B). Besides information on WTO activities and publications - including the new edition of Shining in the Media Spotlight, the Press and Communications Section will also provide more information on TOURCOM, the First World Conference on Tourism Communications, to be held on 2 - 3 July 2003 in Madrid. This conference will be organized in cooperation with the Spanish Ministry of Economy - Secretariat of Tourism and the Madrid Municipal Tourist Board and is expected to bring a group of excellent speakers on different issues related to tourism communications and some 500 or more delegates to the Spanish capital from all over the world.

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