Ecuador’s door is open to tourism

Ecuador’s new tourism minister says the country’s big presence at ITB Berlin reflects the key role the industry plays in the country’s economy

Tourism in Ecuador currently represents the third source of non-oil income in the country after the banana and shrimp industries.

What are the main activities you are promoting at ITB Berlin this year?

Ecuador has a 184sq m stand where our friendly staff provide all types of printed and digital promotional material about Ecuador. 27 representatives of the Ecuadorian tourism trade, including tour operators, hotels and public tourism enterprises are also there to assist our stand visitors. The stand features virtual reality showcases of some of Ecuador’s astonishing places, and there is a magical show of Ecuadorian music and dance.

What would you say are the three key “selling points” of Ecuador as a destination?

Ecuador is a mega-diverse destination. It has four worlds in one country, it boasts the world treasure of the Galapagos Islands, the warm and sunny Paci c coast, the majestic Andes mountain range, the Amazonian rainforest.

How important is eco-tourism becoming in Ecuador?

Ecotourism has been a fundamental part of the tourism strategy through the years. For instance, the Galapagos Islands are part of the first UNESCO World Heritage Sites declared in 1978 and that recognition is maintained until the present time. We also have various Biosphere Reserves, one of them the Yasuni National Park which is one of the most mega-diverse regions in the world. We are constantly making new discoveries of flora and fauna species, especially amphibians.

What is your message to the world’s travel professionals present at ITB?

The key for succeeding in the amazing world of tourism is “coopetition”, which means that we cooperate and compete in a respectful way among us in order to promote our tourism destinations, motivate travellers to visit the whole world and always do it in a sustainable manner.

Hall 23a / Stand 101

Photo: Rosi Prado de Holguín Minister for Tourism, Ecuador