The newly formed World Committee on Tourism Ethics (WCTE) have defined their main priorities in a meeting held at UNWTO headquarters this week. Accessible tourism, protection of children from all forms of exploitation, the fight against trafficking and anti-poaching are among the priorities which has been defined by WCTE. The Committee held this meeting to identify the major challenges facing responsible tourism and define its Action Plan for the coming four years.
The World Committee on Tourism Ethics is an impartial body responsible for interpreting, applying and evaluating the provisions of the the UNWTO Global Code of Ethics for Tourism.
Under the chairmanship of Pascal Lamy, former director-general, World Trade Organisation, the World Committee on Tourism Ethics met for the first time in its new constitution as appointed by the UNWTO General Assembly in August 2013.
Lamy, said, “The World Committee on Tourism Ethics is not destined to solve major political and economic issues at the global level; it will be a useful instrument in interpreting a frontier area, which is tourism ethics, by binding people together in an operational way.”
Taleb Rifai, secretary-general, UNWTO, added, “One billion tourists crossing international borders every year can mean one billion opportunities but also one billion catastrophes; it is up to us to decide.
Governments, companies and tourists themselves need to ensure tourism works as a force of good and I am convinced that the new Committee on Tourism Ethics will assist greatly in this endeavor.”
The action plan of the committee for the coming four years will focus on: the exploitation of children in all its forms; trafficking; poaching and the illegal trading of wildlife; accessible tourism for all; promotion of fair models of all inclusive holidays; and unfounded ratings on travel portals which may impact the reputation of companies and destinations.