World Tourism Organisation, the agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and accessible tourism celebrates world tourism on September 27, 2020.
United Nations World Tourism Organisation has designated 2020 as the year of tourism and development. According to the agency, this year is an opportunity to promote the potential of tourism to create jobs and opportunities and also advance the inclusion and highlight the unique role tourism can play in preserving and promoting natural and cultural heritage and curbing urban migration.
The theme for this year Tourism and Rural Development, is the global observance day fostering awareness of tourism’s social, cultural, political, and economic value and contribution the sector can make in reaching the sustainable development goals.
For many rural communities, tourism means opportunity. It provides jobs and economic empowerment, including for women and youth. Tourism gives rural communities the ability to protect and promote their natural surroundings, as well as their culture and heritage. In doing so, it allows tourists to enjoy unique experiences. In 2020, World Tourism Day celebrates the sector’s importance for those communities that would otherwise be left behind. It also estimated that by 2050, 68% of the world population will live in urban areas, while 80% of those currently living in extreme poverty live outside towns and cities, hence the theme.
UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvile said, “All around the world, tourism empowers rural communities, providing jobs and opportunity, most notably for women and youth.” WTO, aims at using this year’s celebration to bridge the economic gab among youth and women in rural communities.
This year 2020, marks the 40th anniversary of the first world tourism day. World Tourism Day will again be celebrated by UNWTO’s Member States in all global regions as well as cities and other destinations and individual tourists.