Press releases

1 December 2017 Hello Kitty appointed as Special Ambassador of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism Development 2017
United Nations designated the year 2017 “International Year of Sustainable Tourism Development” and World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) (Headquarters in Madrid; Secretary General Dr. Taleb Rifai) plays a leading role to promote it. UNWTO and Sanrio signed an agreement that appoints Hello Kitty as Special Ambassador of the International Year.
29 November 2017 African tourism leaders debate the role of the sector as a tool for inclusive growth and community engagement
The Conference results in the Lusaka Declaration on Sustainable Tourism The potential of Tourism in poverty alleviation and to induce transformative change has been addressed in Lusaka, capital city of Zambia, in the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Conference on Promoting Sustainable Tourism, a Tool for Inclusive Growth and Community Engagement in Africa. The Conference, a flagship event of the Africa region for the celebration of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, took place last 16-18 November and was coordinated by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in cooperation with the Government of Zambia. 
29 November 2017 UNWTO and Les Roches Marbella open the debate on talent and the competitiveness of destinations
The Conference held in Marbella, Spain, is the continuation of two previous meetings held in Medellín, Colombia, and Bilbao, Spain, in 2015. In addition to presentations by experts in tourism training, the event included interactive sessions providing more than 200 participants with a unique platform to exchange ideas and experiences.
28 November 2017 Conference on tourism, jobs and inclusive growth opens in Jamaica
The Conference organized by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the Government of Jamaica, the World Bank Group and the Inter-American Development Bank aims to set a new collaborative framework for tourism moving towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. An official event of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017, the events gathers 1500 participants and over 150 speakers in Montego Bay, Jamaica.
27 November 2017 UNWTO announces the winners and finalists of the UNWTO Awards
The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) announces the winners of the UNWTO Ulysses Prize and the UNWTO Ethics Award, as well as 14 finalists for the upcoming 14th Edition of the UNWTO Awards for Innovation in Tourism. The Awards Ceremony will be held next January 2018 in Madrid on the occasion of the International Tourism Fair, FITUR.
24 November 2017 UNWTO Secretary-General officially welcomes the winner of the travellers´competition
The winner of the Travellers´ Competition, developed in the framework of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, 2017 (IY2017), Katie Diederichs, officially started her trip after meeting with the UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai. She will now be embarking on an unforgettable trip across six different countries to tell the world how tourism can make a positive change.
23 November 2017 ETC and UNWTO discuss transnational themes and routes in Galicia
The European Travel Commission (ETC) and the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) held an international seminar in Santiago de Compostela to exchange best practices on how to develop and effectively manage transnational tourism themes and routes. The ETC-UNWTO International Seminar on Marketing Transnational Tourism Themes and Routes was hosted by the Xunta de Galicia and Turespaña on 16-17 November 2017 in the emblematic city of Santiago de Compostela, final destination of the thousand-year-old pilgrim route the Way of St. James.  
13 November 2017 Jamaica Conference to address the role of tourism in employment creation and inclusive growth
UNWTO, the Government of Jamaica, the World Bank Group and the Inter-American Development Bank will co-host a Conference on Jobs and Inclusive Growth on 27-29 November in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Under the theme ‘Partnerships for Sustainable Tourism’, the event will assess and discuss the future of the sector in the Caribbean, particularly in view of the impacts of natural disasters such as the recent hurricane Irma.
8 November 2017 Communities’ protests over tourism a wake-up call to the sector
UNWTO / WTM Ministers’ Summit – Overtourism: growth is not the enemy, it is how we manage it Over 60 ministers of tourism and private sector leaders gathered on 7 November in London for the UNWTO / WTM Ministers’ Summit on ‘overtourism’. Moderated by CNN International’s Max Foster, the Summit concluded on the need for the tourism sector to engage more and better with local communities.
7 November 2017 No reason to be afraid to travel to the region
Statement by Indian Ocean countries – Madagascar, Mauritius and Seychelles The Minister of Tourism of Madagascar, Roland Ratsiraka, the Minister of Tourism of Mauritius, Anil Kumarsingh Gayan, SC and the Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine of the Seychelles, Maurice Loustau-Lalanne met at the sidelines of the World Travel Market in London to express a common message of confidence on the measures being taken by Madagascar to overcome the plague outbreak.