UNWTO announced program to accelerate the adoption of new technologies

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The initiative focuses on small and medium-sized businesses, which represent 80% of all tourism businesses

UNWTO has announced the launch of the Digital Futures Program, designed to accelerate the adoption of new technologies among tourism businesses.

Developed in collaboration with some of the world’s leading technology, finance and business companies such as Mastercard, the initiative focuses on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which represent 80% of all tourism businesses. UNWTO aims to reach at least 1 million tourism SMEs during the life of the Program, providing them with the skills and basic knowledge necessary to harness the power of new and emerging technologies.

The Digital Futures Program will help them recover from the impacts of the pandemic and boost the sector, driven by innovation and new technologies.

UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili says: “Small businesses are the backbone of tourism. The Digital Futures Program will help them recover from the impacts of the pandemic and boost the sector, driven by innovation and new technologies.”

In order to provide SMEs with personalized guidance and tools, the program is based on a digital readiness diagnostic tool that assesses SMEs on five key digital dimensions: connectivity, business growth, e-commerce, big data and analytics, and payments and security. The launch event, held at the IE Tower in Madrid, was attended by around 200 participants, including UNWTO Member States’ Ambassadors to Spain, as well as investment and promotion agencies, and SMEs themselves.