Press Release


61st meeting of the UNWTO Regional Commission for the Americas addresses application of technology to tourism

PR No.: 
PR 17074
08 Jun 17

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), together with the Ministry of Tourism of El Salvador and the Honduran Institute of Tourism, jointly held the 61st Meeting of the UNWTO Regional Commission for the Americas. The meeting, which took place in San Salvador and Roatán on 30 and 31 May 2017, respectively, culminated in an international seminar on new technologies applied to tourism on 1 June 2017.

The meeting of UNWTO Regional Commission for the Americas (CAM) was held for the first time in two locations—in the Salvadoran capital and in Roatán, Honduras—and was attended by 20 delegations from Member States, 13 Affiliate Members and regional bodies.

In a region clearly differentiated by its natural heritage, the observance of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017 was present in the debates. The majority of the Member States noted the importance of including sustainability in sectoral policies as a key area, going beyond the global campaign of the International Year.

Countries such as Colombia and Nicaragua expressed their interest in expanding the social dimension entailed by the concept of sustainability, as well as its application to identity and culture, to convert sustainability into added value for its tourism sector. For its part, Costa Rica, a pioneering Member State in its commitment to sustainable tourism, pointed out the importance of working on sustainability from within the educational system and in the family milieu, emphasizing the need to involve the media.

The relationship between sustainability and new technologies was the main theme of the International Seminar held after the Regional Commission. Around 120 participants, both international and local, addressed the current trends in this discipline, especially with regard to Big Data and new platforms of tourism services.

The value of the International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories, one of the main initiatives of the UNWTO in assessing the impact of the sector, was one of the points that generated the most agreement at the Regional Meeting.

“We are in a region that presents a multitude of good practices related to sustainable tourism that can be beneficial in other areas of the world,” commented UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai. The Secretary-General of the Organization, who met with the President of El Salvador, Salvador Sánchez Cerén, received during his visit the Great Gold Plate Cross of the Order of José Simeón Cañas, Liberator of Slaves. The Government of Honduras also decorated UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai with as Grand Officer of the Order of Francisco Morazán.

The 62nd meeting of the CAM will be held in Chengdu, China, on 12 September 2017 in the framework of the 22nd UNWTO General Assembly.

Additional information:

Photos of the Event

Contacts:

UNWTO Media Officer Rut Gomez Sobrino

Tel: (+34) 91 567 81 60 / rgomez@unwto.org

UNWTO Communications & Publications Programme

Tel: (+34) 91 567 8100 / Fax: +34 91 567 8218 / comm@UNWTO.org