UN Tourism

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Membership in UN Tourism:
– UN Tourism has 160 Member States
– Six associate members: Aruba, Flanders, Hong Kong, Macao, Madeira, and Puerto Rico
– Two observers: Holy See (1979), Palestine (1999)
– Over 500 affiliate members
– Russia announced its exit in April 2022 due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine

Publications in UN Tourism:
– UNWTO Annual Report
– UN Tourism World Tourism Barometer
– UNWTO Declarations
– Knowledge Network Issues Paper Series

Tourism Data Dashboard in UN Tourism:
– Provides statistics on inbound and outbound tourism
– Covers tourist arrivals, tourism’s GDP contribution, source markets, and more
– Offers insights at global, regional, and national levels

Visa Openness Report in UN Tourism:
– G20 economies could boost international tourist numbers by 122 million
Tourism exports could increase by US$2016 billion
– Employment could rise by 5 million
– In 2016, the highest percentage of tourists didn’t need visas (39%)
– Listed the 30 countries with the least visa restrictions in 2015

Further Reading and External Links related to UN Tourism:
– Jafari, J. (1974) – Creation of the intergovernmental world tourism organization
– United Nations General Assembly (1969) – General assembly – twenty-fourth session
– United Nations World Tourism Organization (2007) – About UNWTO
– World Tourism Organization (2003) – WTO news, 2003 (3)
– World Tourism Organization changed its abbreviation to UNWTO in 2005
– Wikimedia Commons has media related to UNWTO.

UN Tourism (Wikipedia)

UN Tourism (UNWTO until 2023) is a specialized agency of the United Nations which promotes responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism. Its headquarters are based in Madrid, Spain. Other offices include: a Regional Support Office for Asia and the Pacific in Nara, Japan and a Regional Office for West Asia in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

UN Tourism
AbbreviationUN Tourism
Formation1 November 1975 (48 years ago) (1975-11-01)
TypeUnited Nations specialized agency
Legal statusActive
HeadquartersMadrid, Spain
160 Member States
Zurab Pololikashvili
Parent organization
United Nations
icon Politics portal

UN Tourism promotes tourism and serves as a global forum for tourism policy and a source of tourism research and knowledge. It encourages Competitiveness, Innovation, Education, Investments & Digital Transformation, Ethics, Culture & Social Responsibility, Technical Cooperation, UN Tourism Academy, and Statistics.

The six official languages of UN Tourism are Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.

Before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, tourism stood at an all-time high: 1 out of 10 jobs worldwide depended on tourism and international tourist arrivals reached 1.5 billion in 2019. Against a backdrop of heightened uncertainty, UN Tourism conveyed the Global Tourism Crisis Committee to guide the tourism sector as it faced up to the COVID-19 challenge.

From its inception in 1975 until 2023, UN Tourism was called the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

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