WTTC appeals to G20 to lead coordinated tourism recovery efforts

LONDON, UK — The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) is calling upon tourism ministers to coordinate recovery efforts ahead of an extraordinary G20 meeting later this week.

The meeting, which will take place on April 24, will discuss how to combat the COVID-19 crisis that’s crippling the entire Travel & Tourism sector.

According to the WTTC, which represents the global Travel & Tourism private sector, the COVID-19 outbreak is threatening the jobs of 75 million people around world and one million jobs daily, significantly impacting major source markets.

Ahead of the meeting, WTTC praised the G20 for freezing the debt of the world’s poorest countries as a major step towards enabling them to bolster their health systems, to save lives and combat COVID-19.

“The G20’s proven record, which powered the recovery following the financial crisis in 2008, and the recent decisive action to freeze debt proves this forum is the best platform with the speed and agility needed, to drive forward the urgent actions required to set the pace and save the global Travel & Tourism sector and enable it to survive and thrive,” says Gloria Guevara, WTTC President & CEO. “WTTC proposes tourism ministers participating in the meeting, fully jointly commit with the private sector to four key principles to achieve a faster recovery.”

Guevara adds that the upcoming meeting offers “the best platform to ensure a coordinated approach for a faster recovery.” The G20 includes some of the key source markets to the majority of regions around the world. Travel & Tourism across the G20 represented 76% of global Travel & Tourism GDP in 2019.

WTTC’s four principles to ensure swift recovery for the Travel & Tourism sector and the global economy following the end of the COVID-19 outbreak, are:

  1. A joint public-private coordinated approach across the G20 to re-establish effective operations, remove travel barriers and reopen borders. This would ensure the efficient resumption of flights, movement of people and widescale travel essential to re-build confidence in Travel & Tourism.
  2. Enhance the seamless traveller journey experience, combining the latest technology and protocols to increase health standards. Consider the “new normal” for the sector with components of health, security, hygiene and sustainability with a traveler-centric approach.
  3. Work with the private sector and health experts to define global standards for the new normal, grounded in science which can be easily adopted by businesses of every size across all travel industries and can be implemented across the world.
  4. Continue providing support to the Travel & Tourism sector during the recovery phase, throughout the entire travel eco-system. Financial aid for workers and businesses to promote a swift recovery. It is vital the domino effect is fully realized so that businesses large and small can all recover and prosper.

Following these four principles, says the WTTC, will reduce the recovery timeframe of the global economy and offer reassurance to travellers that the time is right once more to explore and visit.