The President and CEO of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), Gloria Guevara Manzo, assured that regional coordination between countries is essential to promote the prompt recovery of tourism activity safely.
During his participation in the virtual forum “The future of tourism, South American vision”, organized by the South American Tourism Federation (FEDESUD), he pointed out that only through cooperation between nations can the negative effects of the pandemic be faced by Covid -19.
He said that the joint work will allow a better implementation and homologation of travel protocols in the new normal, the exchange of experiences, the work between authorities and the private sector and, above all, the recovery of the confidence of travelers.
Guevara Manzo stressed that governments that provide timely support to the tourism sector will be the first to emerge from the economic crisis that the Covid-19 pandemic has left. In this sense, he said that the WTTC has identified four axes that will be fundamental for the recovery of tourist activity:
Public-private coordination that allows the prompt revival of tourism.
Standardization of measures and reduction of time in airports, to improve the travel experience.
Hygiene and sanitation protocols in hotels, airports and establishments, which provide confidence to the traveler.
Strong government support for tourism businesses.
Additionally, he explained that to promote the safe reactivation of tourism, the WTTC announced a series of hygiene protocols to protect the health of travelers, as well as the Global Safety Stamp that grants destinations that adopt its standards. sanitation, with the support of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and based on the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO).
The virtual forum, moderated by Maribel Rodríguez, Senior Vice President of the WTTC, had speakers from the tourist chambers of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela, and was followed by members of the industry from Mexico, Central America , the Caribbean, South America and Europe, mainly.
Aldo Elías, President of FEDESUD and head of the Argentine Chamber of Tourism (CAT), stressed that the most important thing at the moment is to regain the confidence of travelers and create regional tourist corridors that allow the development of tourism activity.
Marco Mercado Murillo, President of the Private Tourism Sector of Bolivia, said that the government has provided a series of programs to support wages and credits to small and medium-sized companies, to face the emergency situation.
Helen Kouyoumdjian, Vice President of the Chilean Tourism Federation, explained that the government has applied employment protection measures and the provision of credits for business support.
Holbach Muñetón, President of the National Federation of Chambers of Tourism of Ecuador, stressed that tourism will be part of the solution to the economic problems that countries face as a result of the pandemic. He said that loans are positive, but they leave companies the burden of debt.
Carlos Canales, President of the National Chamber of Tourism of Peru, said that tourism should be considered as a State policy of the highest priority, with specific supports that allow it to get ahead.
Juan Martínes Escrich, President of the Uruguayan Chamber of Tourism, stressed that in his country financing lines have been obtained at preferential rates to support the sector, thanks to the coordinated work between authorities and businessmen.
Leudo González, President of the Higher Council of Tourism of Venezuela, pointed out that Covid-19 accentuated the difficulties for tourism in his country, so he has begun a dialogue with the government in search of support for the revival of tourism.
Studies by the World Travel and Tourism Council indicate that 100 million jobs have been lost due to the negative effects of Covid-19. This health emergency is five times bigger than the financial crisis that was experienced globally in 2008.
In the last 10 years the growth of this industry has been higher than that of the world economy. Furthermore, the sector contributes 10.3 percent of GDP and generates one in every four jobs on the planet.