- Participation of the Minister of Tourism at the 58th commission meeting of OMT for Africa
- Adoption of a charter of sustainable tourism that will be signed on the margin of the COP22 in Marrakesh
The Minister of Tourism, Mr. Lahcen Haddad, accompanied by a strong delegation, has taken part from the 19th to the 21th of April 2016 in Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire) to the 58th meeting of the OMT commission for Africa, which brought together the Secretary General of the World Tourism Organization, African tourism Ministers and high officials and tourism representatives in Africa. This meeting was the occasion to discuss topics relating to the sector in the region, including tourism and ethic, sustainability, tourism and security and the ST-EP international organization. (ST-EP) was founded in 2002 during the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg. It seeks to decrease poverty through assisting in projects of sustainable development.
During works relating to point 9 “2017: International year for sustainable tourism for development”, the participants have stated the importance of tourism in Africa, reflecting its contribution to GDP, currency flowing, job creation, fight against poverty and bringing people and civilizations together.
Tourist arrivals in Africa: 56 million tourists in 2014 (compared to 26 millions in 2001)
Tourism revenue: 36 billion Dollars, 7% of the continent’s exports.
Projection for the next decade: The industry of tourism in Africa could create 3.8 million jobs with effective planning and favorable development.
Emphasis was also placed on the challenges that prejudice the development of tourism in the African continent, both on security and environmental level; hence the need to start a solid cooperation based on a better appropriation of consumption and production patterns, with a larger distribution of wealth between Northern and Southern countries.
For this purpose, Mr. Haddad recalled “the opportunity for the African continent to integrate the principles of sustainable development for tourism policies.” He stated on this regard “the necessity to take into consideration these issues of sustainability in all lifecycles of the touristic product, according to an approach that involves different actors”
In this respect, Morocco has suggested the adoption of a “Moroccan Charter for Sustainable Tourism” in anticipation of its signature by the African Ministers of Tourism during COP22 in Marrakesh. The adoption of this African Charter for Sustainable Tourism will allow capitalizing on Morocco’s expertise, particularly through the Moroccan Charter for Sustainable Tourism adopted on January 25th during the first edition of the “Moroccan day for Sustainable and Responsible Tourism in Rabat”. This proposal also embodies the positioning of our country as a leader for tourism sustainability in the region.
Indeed, the efforts undertaken by Morocco for sustainable tourism have been acknowledged internationally and have won “the Silver Award” in Africa during the 2nd edition of the “African responsible tourism awards” in Cape Town at the “World Travel Market Africa” in the category “Best for Public Sector Policy / Support ».
As a reminder, the Ministry of Tourism had previously contributed during this meeting to the enquiry of OMT on the application of the Global Code of Ethics on Tourism and had become co-author of the resolution project of the aforementioned code during the 70th session of the UN General Assembly “International Year for Sustainable Tourism for Development.”
During this important regional event, Mr. Haddad reaffirmed the Ministry of Tourism’s commitment to strengthen its engagement to promote an active culture of sustainability through its commitment (as co-lead) of the “Program for Sustainable Tourism” derived from the Ten-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns (10YFP), and by supporting the implementation of its work plan.