|Visa facilitation, policies for growth and tourism for tomorrow.|
The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) have focused its efforts on three strategic priorities, in order to build recognition for and assist the burgeoning global tourism industry.
Addressing delegates at the first-ever Asia Summit 2013 in Seoul, WTTC president and chief executive David Scowsill highlighted people’s freedom to travel, policies for growth and tourism for tomorrow.
The freedom to travel and better visa facilitation will assist in breaking down established barriers of communication, business and tourism.
“Asia’s millions of new middle class consumers have the right to travel safely, securely and efficiently across international borders,” Mr Scowsill said.
“However, despite an increasing number of visa waiver programmes around the world, too many people still find it too difficult to cross borders as international tourists.”
The second strategy, ‘policies for growth’ focuses on the WTTC’s efforts to proportionate taxation.
“Taxes in our industry need to stimulate growth rather than stifle it… too many governments still view travellers as a soft target for taxation,” Mr Scowsill said.
Mr Scowsill said the United Kingdom’s airline passenger duty was the worst culprit, destroying UK GDP by around US$6.3 billion per annum and costing approximately 90,000 jobs.
The third strategy involves planning and foresight, encouraging ‘tourism for tomorrow’.
“We believe in developing a sustainable, long term approach to our industry,” Mr Scowsill said.
“Our Global Leaders for Tourism Initiative – the Golden Book – plays a vital role in our campaign to keep support for our industry growth high on the agendas of Presidents and Prime Ministers.”
Mr Scowsill said the decision to stage WTTC’s first Asia summit in Korea could not be more appropriate, given the country has been “staying ahead of tomorrow” for a very long time.