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WTTC and Trip Group Report Reveals Shift in Traveler Behaviors

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WTTC and Trip Group Report Reveals Shift in Traveler Behaviors - TRAVELINDEXLondon, United Kingdom, November 30, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / International spending expected to rise 94% in 2022. Travelers headed to secondary destinations and booking ‘the great outdoors’ in 2021. Eight out of 10 travelers will choose sustainable travel. The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and Trip Group have launched ‘Trending in Travel’, a new report that shows the latest trends traveler behavior and future booking patterns in the wake of COVID-19.

WTTC, representing the global Travel & Tourism sector, joined forces with leading global travel service provider, Trip.com Group, and its major consumer brands Trip, Ctrip and Skyscanner, to analyse consumer trends shaping the recovery of the Travel & Tourism sector.

WTTC’s latest projections show strong growth in international spending for 2022 and beyond, projected to overtake domestic spending in 2022, as more destinations ease restrictions and vaccination rates continue to rise.

Following a 69.4% decline (2020), global international spending on travel is set to rise by 9.3% in 2021, and significantly by 93.8% in 2022.

The report also reveals how severe and confusing travel restrictions around the world drove a significant rise in domestic tourism, with a surge in domestic hotel bookings of more than 200% on Trip’s platform this year compared to 2019.

Since the start of the pandemic, mobility restrictions have hindered international travel and, although domestic travel will provide a much-needed boost to the sector, WTTC says the return of international travel is critical to rebooting the global economy.

The report focuses on booking trends, consumer considerations, and consumer profiles. It also features examples of markets whose resilience has provided a platform for the recovery of the Travel & Tourism sector.

The report shows how COVID-19 has changed the way people travel; younger travellers are the first to return to travel; increased demand for longer stays; the importance of fee-free cancellations and the demand for high levels of health and safety checks.

To avoid travel restrictions, travelers are seeking secondary destinations, away from traditional holiday spots, as their destination of choice. This preference positively impacts local communities and livelihoods. According to Trip’s hotel booking data, Abu Dhabi (UAE) Chiang Mai (Thailand), Doha (Qatar), Florence (Italy), and Frankfurt (Germany) were the most popular secondary destinations in their respective countries in 2021.

The report goes on to show that, according to Ctrip data, bookings for ‘the great outdoors’ will predominate in the short and medium term. In China – one of the world’s largest travel markets – nature-related attraction bookings have increased by 265% in the first half of this year compared to the same period last year.

The pause in travel has also heightened consumers’ eagerness to travel more sustainably with more than eight out of 10 (83%) global travelers saying they would make sustainable travel a priority in the future.

Reinforcing this long-term trend, since its launch in 2019, the report shows 68 million travellers have opted to book a “Greener Choice” labelled flight on Skyscanner, a comparatively lower-carbon flight choice.

According to the report, 70% of travelers in many major countries such as the U.S., Spain, the UK, Canada, and Japan plan to spend more on travel in 2022 than they have in the last five years, including 2019 – one of the best years on record for Travel & Tourism.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, said: “It is clear people are really looking forward to traveling again. Consumers are curious, they are looking at new destinations, ‘the great outdoors’ and travel that benefits the places and people they visit. As travel and tourism represents over 10% of global GDP this is good news for jobs and economies. The impact in some countries has been devastating for local communities and this report shows that business is returning in earnest.”

Jane Sun, CEO of Trip Group, said: “Travelers around the world have shown their eagerness to travel, whether limited to domestic travel or able to cross borders, we see a huge amount of pent-up demand steadily being released.

“To better evolve with the recovery we must understand travelers, and as an industry adapt to emerging trends.”

Latest WTTC research shows the global recovery of the Travel & Tourism sector is picking up pace with the sector’s contribution to global GDP projected to rise by 30.7% in 2021 and 31.7% in 2022.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

UNWTO and Council of Europe to Promote Cultural Routes

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UNWTO and Council of Europe to Promote Cultural Routes - TRAVELINDEXBrussels, Belgium, November 26, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the Council of Europe will work together to develop the opportunities tourism offers to local communities and to enhance the tourist experience along the European region’s Cultural Routes.

The joint actions will be aimed at recognizing the added value that cultural routes offer for sustainable tourism development, cultural heritage safeguarding and intercultural dialogue. The collaboration will also further highlight the routes’ potential for advancing social, economic and cultural development, benefitting both Europe and its partner countries by strengthening cultural and historical ties.

All along the Cultural Routes, tourism has the power to support jobs and create other development opportunities for communities

International Year of Creative Economy 2021

The two organizations will be collaborating first in the sphere of creative tourism, to showcase good practices in line with the International Year of Creative Economy 2021, and further promote destinations encompassed by the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Cultural Routes (EPA) of the Council of Europe.

UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili said: “All along the Cultural Routes, tourism has the power to support jobs and create other development opportunities for communities. It is also a chance to protect and promote cultural heritage and to celebrate creativity.”

Council of Europe Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić adds: “The Cultural Routes programme plays an important role in the promotion of Europe’s rich cultural heritage, in addition to being an effective tool for fostering intercultural dialogue and transnational co-operation.

We are delighted that the UN’s World Tourism Organisation will contribute its expertise to the Cultural Routes programme on the basis of this Memorandum of Understanding.”

Enhancing accessibility

The partnership will also see UNWTO and the Council of Europe harness their individual expertise and technical capabilities to further develop Cultural Routes, through research, training and policymaking. Special attention will be paid to the mapping of Cultural Routes and to promoting greater accessibility for persons with disabilities and specific access requirements.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Annual Report on China’s Outbound Tourism Development 2021 Released

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Annual Report on China’s Outbound Tourism Development 2021 Released

Beijing, China, November 25, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / On Nov. 22, China Tourism Academy released the “Annual Report on China’s Outbound Tourism Development 2021.” The Report was namely released by Dr. Jingsong Yang, Director of the Institute of International Studies (the Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Research Institute.) Here are some key points:

In 2020, China’s outbound tourist trips totaled 20.334 million, a decrease of 86.9% compared to 2019. In February 2020, outbound travel number dropped dramatically to less than 600,000 from over 10 million in January. The outbound group tours came to a complete stop. Outbound tourist trips for 2021 are projected to reach 25.62 million, an increase of 27% from 2020. Compared to the large scale of over 100 million outbound travelers prior to the pandemic, China’s outbound tourism basically remains at a standstill.

Asia continued to be the top destination with 95.45% visitations by Chinese travelers, followed by Europe, the Americas, Oceania, and Africa. Overall, trips to those continents decreased by 70% to 95%, with Asia taking the smallest decrease and Oceania the biggest decrease. Hong Kong SAR, Macao SAR and Chinese Taipei remained as the most visited destinations, accounting for more than 80% of visits.

The top 15 destinations were Macau SAR, Hong Kong SAR, Vietnam, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Cambodia, the U.S., Singapore, Chinese Taipei, Malaysia, the U.K., Australia, Canada and Indonesia, with a decrease ranging from 66% to 98%. Travel to Macau SAR showed an obvious recovery.

The survey shows that safety, short-distance, and companionship are the focal points for outbound travel. 82.8% of respondents would travel to a destination where there are no longer COVID infections. Respondents are more inclined to avoid crowded destinations. 81.6% indicate that for a while, they would opt for domestic travel rather than outbound travel. 71.7% are reluctant to travel abroad by air due to the COVID infection uncertainties.

For outbound travel, the majority of the respondents would rely on social media and travel websites, only 25.08% would use tour operators, which shows a decrease of 37.79% compared to 2019. Most respondents choose “travel with entire family” and “travel with partial family,” and fewer choose “travel alone” and “travel with strangers.” As to travel duration, less than 10% choose more than 15 days and more than 60% plan for 1 to 7 days, of which nearly 50% choose 4 to 7 days.

Outbound tourism continues to be affected by the global pandemic, and both international and Chinese domestic situations are still unstable. In the future, public health control measures will likely become normalized, and Chinese outbound tourists will desire better safety and health protection. The outbound tourism industry is adapting to a new normal through technological innovations and improvements, including vaccinations, rapid PCR testing, digital health codes, etc. Additionally, 5G, Big Data, A.I., etc., are being integrated into the tourism industry practices, which would positively aid outbound tourism in the future.

The Report states that the Chinese citizens still have a desire for outbound travel, supported by the large population base, urbanization, and better economic conditions. The Report also contains a section outlining the industry’s efforts/innovation in transitioning from outbound tourism to domestic tourism to meet the market demand. The final section of the Report includes an analysis of the 2022 outlook.

(Note: This is an unofficial summary in English and serves as a reference only. Please refer to the official Chinese document for precise wording and meaning.)

About Haybina Hao
Haybina is former Regional Director – Greater China for World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC, headquartered in London). Previously she also served as V.P. International Development for National Tour Association based in the U.S. She is an expert on China outbound tourism and has worked extensively with the Greater China travel trade, tourism organizations and governmental agencies. She is currently an international travel industry reporter and has been reporting in both Chinese and English. Linkedin

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

WTTC and ETC call EU Members to Align Responses to Epidemiological Situation

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WTTC and ETC call EU Members to Align Responses to Epidemiological Situation

London, United Kingdom, November 24, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / Almost 900,000 Travel & Tourism jobs across the EU at risk if restrictions return. Reinstating severe restrictions would cause serious damage to the sector. A staggering €35 billion could be wiped off the region’s economy this year. The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and the European Travel Commission (ETC), supported by a number of key travel stakeholders, have urged EU Member States to align their responses to the deteriorating COVID-19 situation and avoid imposing any limits to the freedom of movement across Europe.

The organisations say the sector cannot afford inconsistent and ever-changing national responses, and a joint EU approach is the only solution to saving the struggling Travel & Tourism sector in Europe.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) is now acknowledging that EU travel restrictions have not had a significant impact on reducing virus transmission, hospitalisations, or deaths.

WTTC and ETC stress that measures aiming at restricting border crossing would not have any health benefits but could result in a huge economic impact to the region.

According to latest WTTC research, up to 900,000 jobs are at risk across the EU’s Travel & Tourism sector this year if travel restrictions are reimposed this winter.

Furthermore, governments across the EU could see up to €35 billion wiped from the sector’s contribution to the economy before the end of 2021 if severe travel restrictions come back into force.

WTTC and ETC say EU Member States have the power to influence and drive forward the coordinated recovery effort needed to preserve the sector and only a coordinated approach will save the millions of livelihoods that depend on the sector.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, said: “We urgently need to restore the confidence to travel and not create more uncertainty. It is vital we have a properly coordinated response across the EU which both businesses and travellers can understand.

“The vaccination rollout across the EU is among the best in the world with 65% of the population now fully vaccinated. We cannot afford to let all the hard-earned progress made this year to be reversed. This will have catastrophic consequences for jobs and livelihoods.

“While we fully recognise that protecting public health is paramount, we urge all EU Member states to continue using the EU’s Digital COVID Certificate, which has successfully allowed fully-vaccinated people to travel safely and freely.”

Luís Araújo, ETC’s President, added: “As the colder months approach and some European countries face a worsening epidemiological situation, we call on the EU governments to work together to ensure the freedom of movement across Europe”.

“We must avoid any further uncertainty or fragmentation. With the high vaccination rates, EU COVID Certificate and strict safety protocols in place, safe travel is absolutely possible. In the lead up to the highly anticipated holiday season, EU citizens need clear and coherent rules”.

Last year, WTTC research revealed more than two million Travel & Tourism jobs were lost across the EU, and its latest research reveals that if wide scale restrictions were enforced in 2022, a further three million would be at stake next year.

Following 18 months in which economies around the world have been already ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic, WTTC research also shows that that if punishing restrictions were to remain locked in place for much of next year, it could result in more than €143 billion being wiped from the EU economy.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

First Regional Conference in Kuala Lumpur on Women’s Empowerment

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First Regional Conference in Kuala Lumpur on Women’s Empowerment

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, November 24, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / UNWTO’s Members from across Asia and the Pacific came together to advance the tourism sector’s contribution to gender equality and women’s empowerment.

The UNWTO Regional Conference on the Empowerment of Women in Tourism in Asia and the Pacific – the first event on the topic organized by UNWTO jointly with Malaysia’s Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture – brought together more than 500 key virtual participants in addition to around 100 local in-person stakeholders. Alongside UNWTO experts, government policymakers, UN Women representatives, high-level representatives of women’s associations and NGOs, joined leading academics to address some of the key challenges and opportunities for women in tourism in the region.

In Asia and the Pacific, women make up 53% of the tourism workforce. However, they remain concentrated in lower paid-positions and tens to have poorer working conditions. As in other regions of the world, high-level and leadership positions seem to be the sole prerogative of men. The aim of this conference was to contribute to international efforts to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 5 (SDG5) on gender equality and the empowerment of women, particularly in light of how the pandemic has worsened the socio-economic situation of the female tourism workforce in the region.

In her welcome and opening remarks, H.E. Dato’ Sri Nancy Shukri, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture of Malaysia reinforced this main objective of the conference and said  “As part of efforts to advance a more inclusive recovery for the tourism sector which is in line with the Sustainable Development Goals and particularly SDG 5 on gender equality, I believe this conference will provide us with deep insights on strategies and the future prospects for women in tourism in the Asia-Pacific region.”

The discussions of the conference focused on the six thematic pillars of UNWTO’s Action Plan on Women in Tourism. These include women’s employment and leadership; entrepreneurship; education and training for the realities of post-COVID19 tourism; and data and statistics for an inclusive recovery. Based on these thematic areas, the conference explored how tourism’s immense potential for advancing women’s economic empowerment can be further enhanced through the implementation of the right recovery policies and strategies.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

UNWTO Looks to Future with EU Tourism Ministers

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UNWTO Looks to Future with EU Tourism Ministers

Ljubljana, Slovenia, November 20, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The UNWTO leadership has addressed an informal meeting of EU Ministers Responsible for Tourism, further strengthening ties with the European Institutions.

Read all the latest UNWTO News and Updates here.

The Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union included tourism on its programme of work, recognizing the sector’s heightened relevance and importance for inclusive, post-pandemic recovery. Addressing the Ministers, UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili commended European leaders for protecting tourism jobs and businesses, and for playing a leading role in restoring confidence in international travel through harmonized rules and protocols and the introduction of the EU Digital COVID Certificate.

At the same time, the Secretary-General also provided the EU Ministers with an overview of UNWTO’s own work leading the sector’s response to the crisis, as well as more recent achievements advancing tourism’s climate action. Margaritis Schinas, Vice President of the European Commission, played an active role in the UNWTO Global Tourism Crisis Committee, created to unite the sector and provide clear, harmonized recommendations for recovery, and has also visited the UNWTO Headquarters in Madrid for face-to-face talks with the Secretary-General.

Strengthening ties

This latest intervention further strengthens the ties between UNWTO and the European Institutions, building on the work done prior to the pandemic. In February 2020, the UNWTO leadership visited Brussels. As well as addressing the European Parliament, Secretary-General Pololikashvili also met with Ministers and Secretaries of State for tourism of European Countries, making clear the role the sector can play in driving inclusive growth across the region and in advancing the ambitions of the European Green Deal. More recently, the UNWTO leadership returned to Brussels in October, with a more in-depth agenda focusing on tourism’s place in recovery and future growth for European economies and societies.

Read all the latest UNWTO News and Updates here.

Following on from the informal meeting of EU Ministers Responsible for Tourism, UNWTO also took part in the 20th European Tourism Forum, also held against the backdrop of the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Europe’s Tourism Ministers will then be part of the upcoming UNWTO General Assembly, scheduled to take place in Madrid, Spain, 30 November to 3 December.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

PATA Welcomes Trip.com Group as Newest Corporate Member

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PATA Welcomes Trip.com Group as Newest Corporate Member - TRAVELINDEXBangkok, Thailand, November 18, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), is pleased to welcome Trip.com Group, a leading global travel service provider, as its newest corporate member.

By becoming a member of PATA, Trip.com Group confirms its place as leading force in the industry in the region as well as worldwide. Joining the Association will enable Trip.com Group to increase its influence in the sector and continue delivering precious insights to PATA members and partners. This decision will also allow Trip.com Group to contribute to the recovery of the regional industry at a larger scale and further position the Asia Pacific region as a rising destination for both local and international travellers.

Deepening collaboration with PATA will enable Trip.com Group to expand its network in the region and across diverse areas of the tourism industry. PATA provides access to a number of key industry events in established and emerging markets, such as the recent PATA Wellness and Luxury Travel Conference and Mart 2021 that featured a range of industry-leading speakers, including Trip.com Group CEO Jane Sun. By joining the Association, Trip.com Group will also have access to seminars and trainings on evolving regional trends and new developments, enhancing its offering to partners across all business areas.

Jane Sun, CEO of Trip.com Group, commented, “We are delighted to be part of PATA, one of the most respected and trusted travel associations in the region and worldwide. Here at Trip.com Group, we are excited to connect with their strong network of industry players to collaborate on ways to better serve travellers in the region and partners around the world. We look forward to working more closely with the team and doing our part in contributing to the recovery of the region.”

Liz Ortiguera, CEO of PATA, added, “Having Trip.com Group join the Association is wonderful news for us. We are proud to have a leading company becoming a member and we are excited to see how this partnership will help the recovery of the region. Jane Sun and I share common interests and values and we look forward to collaborating on the development of travel opportunities in the region. The pandemic was hard for everyone; however, we are optimistic for the future and look forward to promoting the region again and welcoming travellers from all around the world.”

Trip.com Group is a leading global travel service provider comprising of Trip.com, Ctrip, Skyscanner, and Qunar. Across its platforms, Trip.com Group helps travellers around the world make informed and cost-effective bookings for travel products and services and enables partners to connect their offerings with users through the aggregation of comprehensive travel-related content and resources, and an advanced transaction platform consisting of apps, websites and 24/7 customer service centres.

About PATA
Founded in 1951, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is a not-for-profit membership association that acts as a catalyst for the responsible development of travel and tourism to, from and within the Asia Pacific region. The Association provides aligned advocacy, insightful research and innovative events to its more than 650 member organisations, including 82 government, state and city tourism bodies, 14 international airlines and airports, 71 hospitality organisations and 75 educational institutions, as well as thousands of young tourism professional (YTP) members across the world. The PATA network also embraces the grassroots activism the PATA Chapters and Student Chapters, who organise numerous travel industry training programmes and business development events across the world. Thousands of travel professionals belong to the 32 local PATA Chapters worldwide, while hundreds of students are members of the 28 PATA Student Chapters globally. The PATAmPOWER platform delivers unrivalled data, forecasts and insights from the PATA Strategic Intelligence Centre to members’ desktops and mobile devices anywhere in the world. PATA’s Head Office has been in Bangkok since 1998. The Association also has official offices or representation in Beijing and London.

About Trip.com Group
Trip.com Group is a leading global travel service provider comprising of Trip.com, Ctrip, Skyscanner, and Qunar. Across its platforms, Trip.com Group helps travellers around the world make informed and cost-effective bookings for travel products and services, and enables partners to connect their offerings with users through the aggregation of comprehensive travel-related content and resources, and an advanced transaction platform consisting of apps, websites and 24/7 customer service centers. Founded in 1999 and listed on NASDAQ in 2003 and HKEX in 2021, Trip.com Group has become one of the best-known travel groups in the world, with the mission “to pursue the perfect trip for a better world”.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Almost 180,000 UK Tourism Jobs Lost if Restrictions Return

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Almost 180,000 UK Tourism Jobs Lost if Restrictions Return - TRAVELINDEXLondon, United Kingdom, November 17, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / A staggering £5.3 billion could be wiped off the value of GDP this year. Up to 180,000 jobs could be lost across the UK Travel & Tourism sector this year, if travel restrictions are reimposed this winter, according to alarming new data from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).

WTTC, which represents the global private Travel & Tourism sector, made the warning after an analysis which showed the impact caused by a further tightening of borders.

The figures were revealed today by Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, during the 2021 Tourism Alliance Conference, a major event where industry leaders will discuss how to rebuild the UK Travel & Tourism sector.

Further damage could be made to the already embattled sector if new restrictions are imposed, such as the new potential measures which would see all travellers requiring a booster jab before they travel overseas.

Recent reports suggest this is being considered by ministers in an attempt to increase protection from COVID-19 for the fully vaccinated.

Currently only available to the over 50’s, so far, less than 20% of population in the UK have received the booster jab. This represents a minority of those able to travel, and such a move would once again leave millions unable to go abroad, with a huge economic impact as a result.

If wide scale restrictions, such as limiting travel only to those with the booster jab were enforced in 2022, more than half a million jobs could be at stake next year.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO said: “The very real prospect of more than 500,000 people losing their jobs across the UK Travel & Tourism sector because of unnecessary travel restrictions is a huge concern to WTTC.

“We cannot afford to let all the hard-earned progress we’ve made this year, slide back and be reversed. Too many people’s livelihoods are at risk, as well as the continuing economic recovery of the UK.”

Last year, WTTC research revealed 307,000 Travel & Tourism jobs were lost, causing misery to those whose livelihoods rely on a thriving sector.

Furthermore, a recent report by WTTC showed how severe restrictions imposed by the UK government, such as the damaging traffic light system, will see international visitor spend fall by almost 50% on 2020 figures, making the UK one of the worst performing countries in the world.

WTTC fear that any further measures which would impact the Travel & Tourism sector, could make the UK a less attractive destination amongst travellers and in turn, the UK would lose competitiveness as a result.

Further analysis from WTTC shows the government could see up to £5.3 billion wiped from the sector’s contribution to the economy before the end of 2021 if severe travel restrictions come back into force.

The global tourism body fears that if punishing restrictions were to remain locked in place for much of next year, it could result in a loss of up to £21.7 billion from the UK economy.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

First Review Study Report on Macao Tourism Industry Development Master Plan

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First Review Study Report on Macao Tourism Industry Development Master Plan

Macau, Macao SAR, November 16, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / Given the new environment, new policies, new directions as well as new trends of tourism industry development, and in parallel with the Macao Special Administrative Region Government’s vision to build a world centre of tourism and leisure, Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) commissioned a research institution at the end of 2020 to examine the implementation progress of the Macao Tourism Industry Development Master Plan (referred to as the “Master Plan”) in various areas in the past five years, and work out amendments, updates, reorganization and additions to the content so that the Master Plan will correspond with the transformations of the tourism landscape and fulfill what is in store for future tourism development in Macao.

The first review study report for the Master Plan was delivered today (12 November). Relevant tasks will be strenuously worked on to make progress in the six areas as follows: enriching the variety of tourism products and facilities, fostering quality tourism, optimizing precision marketing, pushing forward urban construction, capitalizing on smart technology, as well as expanding regional and international cooperation.

Scientific assessment of Macao’s tourism industry development over the past five years
In 2015, MGTO began formulating the Macao Tourism Industry Development Master Plan to lay the foundation and map out the direction for the future development of Macao’s tourism industry in the next 15 years (until 2030). The Master Plan was announced in 2017, proposing eight key objectives, 33 strategies, 29 planning proposals and 91 short-, medium- and long-term action plans, in line with the Macao SAR Government’s commitment to build Macao into a world centre of tourism and leisure. The Master Plan comes with an evaluation mechanism for making timely adjustments to various key objectives, planning proposals and action plans in line with the latest prospect of Macao’s tourism industry.

MGTO commissioned a research institution at the end of 2020 to commence a review of the Master Plan through different research methods, scientifically and systemically soliciting opinions on tourism development from different stakeholders including residents, visitors, members of the trade, organizations, pertinent governmental departments and so forth.

90% of short-term action plans accomplished in first five years
Four major aspects were reviewed as follows: 1) examine and analyze the current situation of Macao’s tourism development; 2) a retrospective overview of the implementation progress from 2016 – 2020; 3) deepening of five key issues: contribution of tourism to the economy, regional tourism cooperation; tourism carrying capacity, diversification of visitor source markets, and smart tourism led by science and technology; 4) addition/omission/adjustment to proposed action plans and key objectives.

On review of the progress over the last five years, 68 out of 69 short-term action plans proposed by the Master Plan were unfolded and implemented while one was not applicable. Targeted goals were accomplished for 62 short-term action plans, leading to an implementation rate of 90%. 22 medium- and long-term action plans have been progressing forward as scheduled.

Introduction of 16 new action plans after review

Towards the direction guided by the Country’s new policies and plans, Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao are pushing forward with the implementation of the Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, while deepening regional cooperation in culture and tourism. Furthermore, the Guangdong-Macao Intensive Cooperation Zone in Hengqin is unfolding a new horizon for comprehensive cooperation between Zhuhai and Macao.

At the same time, the SAR Government has raised the concept of “tourism +” as a policy to promote extension of the tourism industry chain, which, coupled with the changes brought by the pandemic to the tourism environment and travel styles, has caused the internal and external landscape of Macao’s tourism industry to evolve.

Given the new tourism environment, policies, directions and trends, after going through the latest review, MGTO will keep the eight key objectives, 33 strategies and 29 planning proposals put forward in the Master Plan in 2017 unchanged in terms of direction. However, in keeping up with the transformations of the tourism environment and taking into consideration the opinions of various stakeholders and departments in charge, the achieved action plans and those in progress were revised, updated and reorganized. In consequence, 16 new action plans are introduced into the Master Plan.

After review and adjustment, the Master Plan now encompasses 91 action plans in total, comprising 77 phased plans (0 – 5 years) and 14 long-term plans (6 years or above).

Push forward “actions in focus” in six areas
The latest 91 phased and long-term action plans of the Master Plan cover six areas: tourism products and facilities, quality tourism and collaboration, precision marketing, urban construction, smart technology, as well as regional and international cooperation. By taking specific actions in focus, progress will be steered forward in the six areas.

The specific actions in focus include maritime tours, ecological tours and high-end tour products; training programs, enhance quality tourism through the training base for the Greater Bay Area, optimize public-private partnership and foster “tourism +” development; enhance cooperation with e-commerce companies and online media, leverage big data analysis on precision marketing targeting high-value visitors; develop new attractions and strengthen sea, land and air connectivity; tap into application of innovative technology to upgrade visitors’ experience and business environment; deepen tourism cooperation with Hengqin and other cities in the Greater Bay Area, and to strive for resumption of travel and people-to-people exchange with other regions, etc.

The review report also includes a forecast of key indicators and trends for 2025 for reference.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

UNWTO, Panama and NOAH to Create UN Fund for Climate Neutrality

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UNWTO, Panama and NOAH to Create UN Fund for Climate Neutrality

Panama City, Panama, November 14, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / Within the framework of the United Nations Conference on Climate Change COP26, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the Government of Panama and the business group NOAH agreed to work together for the implementation of the United Nations Fund for Climate Neutrality of Tourism. The Fund represents an innovative financing instrument promoted by UNWTO to respond to threats posed by the climate emergency.

In recognition of the existential threat posed by the climate emergency, UNWTO, the government of Panama and NOAH (Network of Ocean Ambassadors Headquarters) will support the creation of a Capital Fund that will make possible the UN Fund for the Climate Neutrality of Tourism and the creation of a Smart Carbon Exchange Market (MIIC). Led by NOAH together with UNWTO, this market aims to promote the exchange of carbon credits in the most efficient way.

Mobilizing resources

With this agreement, Panama ratifies its climate leadership and its efforts to conserve and regenerate nature and, at the same time, unleash economic growth through tourism that benefits local communities. Panama is one of only three carbon negative countries in the world – that is, it absorbs more greenhouse gases than it emits.

These projects reflect UNWTO’s commitment to transform the tourism sector to accelerate the decarbonization of the sector

The Minister of Tourism of Panama, Iván Eskildsen, highlighted “the role of UNWTO in bringing together a leader in climate response like Panama, firmly committed to tourism as a pillar for the future of people and the planet, and NOAH that will contribute technological and financial solutions to mobilize the necessary resources for a sustainable future for the benefit of all.”

“These projects reflect UNWTO’s commitment to transform the tourism sector to accelerate the decarbonization of the sector,” said UNWTO Secretary General Zurab Pololikashvili. He stressed that this is an example of success based on cooperation between “the UN system, international organizations, UNWTO Member States and the private sector in general”.

Towards “Blue Carbon”

With Panama serving as a pilot country for these initiatives, NOAH will prepare a study in coordination with the Ministry of the Environment to estimate the “blue carbon” reserves in mangroves and seagrasses in protected areas of the country, as well as the reserves of carbon in wetlands.

For his part, the founder of NOAH, Frederic Degret, confirmed that “to articulate this great project, Panama will host the international headquarters of an Intelligent Carbon Exchange Market, as we have agreed in the Memorandum of Understanding signed between UNWTO and NOAH.”

The UNWTO, NOAH and Panama ensure the transition to a tourism sector with net zero emissions and focused on improving people’s lives.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News