ITB Berlin News – Read 2017 Day 1 Edition

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A Year of Sustainable Tourism… a Force for Good

This year has been designated by the United Nations as the Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, due to the growing importance of tourism as an economic vector, and a key element of development.

These 12 months are dedicated to celebrating and promoting the contribution of the tourism sector to building a better world, recalling the potential of tourism to advance the universal 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The International Year aims to support a change in policies, business practices and consumer behaviour towards a more sustainable tourism sector than can contribute effectively to the SDGs. ITBBN17_CouvHomepage_D1.png“This is a unique opportunity to build a more responsible and committed tourism sector that can capitalize its immense potential in terms of economic prosperity, social inclusion, peace and understanding, cultural and environmental preservation” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai.

Accounting for 7% of worldwide exports, one in eleven jobs and 10% of the world’s GDP, the tourism sector if well managed can foster inclusive economic growth, social inclusiveness and the protection of cultural and natural assets. This year ITB Berlin is devoting more time and space than ever to CSR. This trade show will be a pivotal element in the implementation of ideas and policies that will move the agenda in the right direction, and we strongly recommend attending and following as many of the activities as possible while you’re at the show. But the question begs, “What happens at the end of the year? What then? What next?” It’s like a “commencement” celebration as students come to the end of one part of their lives and moving on to the “real thing”. After this year aimed at raising standards, there’s no going back. The future is in your hands!