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Albares calls for inclusive and sustainable tourism as a generator of employment and development

Friday 3 December 2021

Albares, who was speaking at the 115th UNWTO Executive Council meeting in Madrid, recalled that tourism has been one of the economic sectors hardest hit by the pandemic, but thanks to having almost 90% of the target population vaccinated, "we can say that in Spain we are facing a solid recovery, also in the tourism sector".

However, he avoided being optimistic, recalling that the new Omicron variant reminds us that the pandemic will not end until it is overcome worldwide, although he also wanted to clarify that Spain has managed to become and project itself as a safe destination. "The recipe for restoring tourism is, after all, the same as for restoring pre-pandemic normality: vaccinate, vaccinate, vaccinate," he said.

In Albares' opinion, "it is natural" that the United Nations should concern itself with international tourism because of its "enormous" transformative potential, both from an economic and social point of view; and, in this sense, he indicated to the representatives of the different countries present at the meeting of the UNWTO Executive Council that if we coordinate our decisions, take them on the basis of scientific criteria and make progress in international vaccination, "we are on the threshold of a rapid and solid recovery of tourism", he said.

To achieve this goal of more inclusive and sustainable tourism, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation called for the "essential role" of the UNWTO and offered Spain's full commitment and support to achieve it.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs also used his speech to recall that the new UNWTO head office in the historic Palacio de Congresos y Exposiciones in Madrid will "soon be available", thus reaffirming Spain's commitment to the United Nations (where we also have the World Food Programme Logistics Centre in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, the United Nations Information and Communications Technology Centre in Valencia and the UNITAR Training Centre in Malaga) as one of the guiding principles of our foreign policy.

Non official translation