Recovery and the challenge of not repeating mistakes

Although many countries in the Americas are managing to contain the pandemic, it is a fact that strong source markets are experiencing a second wave and their states are studying how to implement measures that do not generate collateral damage that have put the travel and tourism market on the brink of collapse.

During the last weeks, different organizations and associations continue to press for systematic tests for COVID-19 to be carried out before the departure of trips as a guarantee that the industry is not responsible for the spread of infections. That should give governments the confidence to reopen borders and support revival.

Without further margin, the states, the health authorities, the WHO and private companies know that they still have time to change course and regain a virtuous sector.

The crisis is getting longer and deeper than anyone could have imagined and the months to come are traditionally the weakest.

Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary General of the UNWTO has been one of the most active officials during long months of standing and is becoming more and more firm in his intentions to reopen the market so that it operates in the new normal. Yesterday he stated: "Tourism is an important engine of the world economy and represents 7% of international trade. It directly or indirectly generates one in ten jobs globally."

"The COVID-19 crisis has devastated the tourism economy, with unprecedented effects on employment and businesses. It was one of the first sectors to be deeply affected by the COVID-19 containment measures, and with the restrictions of Ongoing journey and the looming global recession, you also risk being among the last to recover. Strong and coordinated action is required to save millions of livelihoods. "

"With a 60-80% decrease in international tourism forecast for 2020 and a fall of between $ 910 billion and $ 1.2 trillion in exports, today more than 100 million direct tourism jobs are at risk. of this direct impact, the tourism economy is also linked to many other sectors, including construction, agri-food, distribution services and transportation, all of which exacerbate the magnitude of the impact. "
"COVID-19 has revealed the macroeconomic importance of tourism in most OECD and G20 economies. Many companies across the sector are struggling to survive, with a disproportionate effect on women, youth, rural communities, Indigenous peoples and informal workers, groups that are more likely to work in tourism micro or small businesses. This crisis is also creating even greater hardships for low-income and developing economies and their local communities, which are disproportionately dependent on tourism. and therefore face a serious risk of increased poverty. "

"The current crisis has also exposed gaps in government and industry preparedness and response capacity. Policy action at the national and international levels, as well as greater coordination across sectors and borders, are urgently needed to restore traveler and business confidence, stimulate demand, and accelerate tourism recovery. "

"Turning the crisis into opportunity: working for a more sustainable, inclusive and resilient tourism sector.

This crisis is an opportunity to rethink tourism development. Recovery must involve transforming the sector, reinventing tourism destinations and businesses, rebuilding the tourism ecosystem, and innovating and investing in sustainable tourism. "

"At its core, tourism is about experiences, including the flavors of local food, exploring local landscapes and historical landmarks. But it is primarily about people, whether they are local guides, accommodation operators or other providers. services that make your trip special or help you do business and reach international markets. As such, our collective response must put people first and fulfill our commitment to leave no one behind. This crisis should be an opportunity to ensure a fairer distribution of tourism benefits and advance the transition to a more resilient and carbon neutral tourism economy".

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