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Data, Sustainability and Collaboration Focus as UN Tourism Returns to ITB Berlin

Data, Sustainability and Collaboration Focus as UN Tourism Returns to ITB Berlin- TRAVELINDEX.comBerlin, Germany, March 10, 2024 / TRAVELINDEX / UN Tourism returned to ITB Berlin, bringing its new name and look to the leading travel trade fair and uniting the sector around its focus on sustainability, investments and collaboration.

Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili joined the Governing Mayor of Berlin, Kai Wenger, and other public and private sector leaders in officially opening the 2024 event. He said: “Tourism’s return means so much to so many people. Tourism is a great uniting force. Together, we are growing new areas of our sector, to build greater resilience and spread the benefits of tourism even wider.” At the opening, the event’s host, Messe Berlin was recognized for its 40 years as a UN Tourism Affiliate Member and for its key role in advancing international meetings and events tourism and fostering partnerships in the German capital.

Together, we are growing new areas of our sector, to build greater resilience and spread the benefits of tourism even wider

Under its new look and name, UN Tourism once again made ITB Berlin a top platform for high-level collaboration and for advancing several of its key priorities for the sector:

Better data for deeper transformation

UN Tourism and the World Tourism Cities Federation (WCTF) launched a joint report highlighting the need to measure the social and environmental impacts of tourism in urban destinations in a more effective and harmonized way. The report stresses the importance of embracing big data and other forms of technology and looks ahead to the creation of a first global urban tourism database.

The launch of the publication comes in the same week that all 193 UN members adopted the Statistical Framework for Measuring the Sustainability of Tourism (MST).

Accelerating Climate Action

Continuing its leading role in the One Planet Tourism Network and the Glasgow Declaration, UN Tourism launched Policy Guidance to Support Climate Action by National Tourism Administrations (NTAs). The guide will assist NTAs everywhere to develop policies and create initiatives designed to accelerate the shift towards a low-carbon sector The guide, which also contains examples of best practice, was developed after consultations with Ministries of Tourism of Member States. The guidance is complemented by a Glasgow Declaration Engagement Pack, with practical recommendations on how to get started on climate action in tourism. Also at ITB Berlin, UN Tourism officials participated in a roundtable event on Reconciling Safety and Sustainability.

Additionally, bringing together its focus on rural development, gender equality and sustainability, UN Tourism also participated in a special side event, Sustainable Rural Tourism: A Foundation for Biodiversity Preservation and Gender Equality – Potentials and Interactions, providing insights and best practice recommendations.

Working closely with Member States

Within the framework of ITB 2024, UN Tourism Secretary-General Pololikashvili held a series of high-level bilateral meetings with Ministers of Tourism and other high-level representatives from Member States from across the world. The meetings served to advance plans for joint projects and for key upcoming UN tourism events.