Vancouver Sun

Tourism body releases recovery blueprint


The battered tourism industry can bounce back better than ever if it gets the urgent support it needs to survive, a trade body says. Releasing a blueprint for recovery amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Tourism Organizati­on has made a series of recommenda­tions aimed at propping up the sector before any more damage is done. Among the 23 steps urged are a review of taxes, charges and regulation­s, a plan to put tourism at the centre of national recovery efforts, and the lifting of travel restrictio­ns as soon as possible. “For tourism to fulfil its potential to help societies and whole countries recover from this crisis, our response needs to be quick, consistent, united and ambitious,” said Zurab Pololikash­vili, secretary general of the WTO. The WTO, which has formed a global tourism crisis committee under the auspices of the UN, said last month that the coronaviru­s outbreak could slash global tourism arrivals this year by nearly a third. “We still do not know what the full impact of COVID-19 will be on global tourism,” Pololikash­vili said. “However, we must support the sector now while we prepare for it to come back stronger and more sustainabl­e. Recovery plans and programs for tourism will translate into jobs and economic growth.”

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