Lombok, Indonesia, 6 May 2010 - Re-energizing the work that supports Leaders' directions will be a major focus for APEC's Tourism Working Group as it embarks on drafting a Strategic Plan for the Group.
The TWG agreed to identify interest areas with a view to initiating a strategic approach to facilitate the development of the travel and tourism industry in the Asia-Pacific region. Top priorities are to develop better communication with private and business sector, strengthen multilateral engagement and to increase work on cross cutting issues within other fora.
The Group discussed the issues associated with APEC's Growth Strategy and other 2010 priorities as a means to develop concrete recommendations and achieve a robust outcome for the forthcoming 6th Tourism Ministerial Meeting.
Economic growth and sustainability have been on-going priorities for the Tourism Working Group.
According to the World Travel and Tourism Council, the industry accounts for one in every 13.1 jobs in the world and the ratio is projected to increase in the immediate term. Moreover, APEC members have recognised community-based tourism as a way to increase the flow of revenue from urban centres to rural areas.
In 2008, Tourism Ministers agreed to promote the conservation and preservation of the environment and sustainability has been a predominant feature on the TWG agenda since then.
2010 Tourism Working Group projects include promoting the involvement of local communities in managing rural tourism and the use of clean technologies as a source of energy for hostels.