Now more than ever, the world is looking towards building a much brighter, greener, and more sustainable future. On World Tourism Day 2023, the UN World Tourism Organization (UNTWO) is championing a call for better-targeted investments for people, for planet, and for prosperity. This year’s World Tourism Day theme, Tourism and Green Investments, is putting a focus on the key priorities for the continued growth and rebounding of the industry. It is a call to action for the international community – including governments, multilateral financial institutions, development partners, and private sector investors – to unite around a new tourism investment strategy.
Now is the time for new and innovative solutions, not just traditional investments that promote and underpin economic growth and productivity.
In his official message for World Tourism Day 2023, UN Secretary-General António Guterres underscored the importance of green investments for developing nations, many of whom have economies and communities that are dependent on tourism. These nations, he said, are severely affected by a changing climate and are also facing a growing investment deficit and a cost-of-living crisis.
Despite these challenges, the Caribbean region has had a hopeful year in the world of tourism, having been one of the fastest-recovering regions after the peak of the pandemic. And many, including Belize, have tourism industries that are poised to grow even more in 2023.
Investing in People, Planet, and Prosperity Across the Caribbean
Beyond simple industry growth, the Caribbean region and its leaders are looking towards sustainable industry growth that is rooted in innovation. Earlier this year, at the first-ever Global Tourism Resilience Conference, the Caribbean Tourism Organization proposed its solutions for building a more sustainable industry. CTO President Nicola Madden-Greig expressed her hopes to one day see Caribbean nationals benefitting more from the tourism industry, which in turn, could lead to greater generational wealth for residents.
“Governments and businesses must invest in sustainable and resilient tourism practices. Private actors must adopt zero-emission pathways, lower their energy consumption, and leverage renewable forms of energy. And everyone must protect the biodiversity and ecological balance of all destinations.”
-UN Secretary-General António Guterres
World Tourism Day is observed every year on September 27th. It was first observed in 1980, and the date marks the anniversary of the adoption of the Statutes of the Organization in 1970 which paved the way for the establishment of UNWTO five years later.
Featured Photo by Duarte Dellarole / Ray Caye Island Resort