The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is the United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism.
As the leading international organization in the field of tourism, UNWTO promotes tourism as a driver of economic growth, inclusive development and environmental sustainability and offers leadership and support to the sector in advancing knowledge and tourism policies worldwide.
UNWTO encourages the implementation of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism, to maximize tourism’s socio-economic contribution while minimizing its possible negative impacts, and is committed to promoting tourism as an instrument in achieving the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), geared towards reducing poverty and fostering sustainable development.
UNWTO generates market knowledge, promotes competitive and sustainable tourism policies and instruments, fosters tourism education and training, and works to make tourism an effective tool for development through technical assistance projects in over 100 countries around the world.
UNWTO’s membership includes 156 countries, 6 Associate Members and over 400 Affiliate Members representing the private sector, educational institutions, tourism associations and local tourism authorities.
UNWTO works in six main areas — competitiveness, sustainability, poverty reduction, capacity building, partnerships and mainstreaming — to achieve responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism.
Mainstreaming tourism in the global agenda: Advocating the value of tourism as a driver of socio-economic growth and development, its inclusion as a priority in national and international policies and the need to create a level playing field for the sector to develop and prosper.
Improving tourism competitiveness: Improving UNWTO Members’ competitiveness through knowledge creation and exchange, human resources development and the promotion of excellence in areas such as policy and planning, statistics and market trends, sustainable tourism development, marketing and promotion, product development and risk and crisis management.
Promoting sustainable tourism development: Supporting sustainable tourism policies and practices which make optimal use of environmental resources, respect the socio-cultural authenticity of host communities and provide socio-economic benefits for all.
Advancing tourism’s contribution to poverty reduction and development: Maximizing the contribution of tourism to poverty reduction and achieving the MDGs by making tourism work as a tool for development and promoting the inclusion of tourism in the development agenda.
Source of information: http://www2.unwto.org/