Secretary-General Message

 

Mr. Taleb Rifai

UNWTO Secretary-General

2018 will mark the 10th anniversary of the World Congress on Snow and Mountain Tourism, organized by UNWTO and the Government of Andorra and taking place in Escaldes-Engordany.

Since its inception, this event has been an essential platform for knowledge building and cooperation on the most relevant issues facing mountain tourism. These range from overcoming the challenges of harsh climate conditions, to natural disasters and infrastructure development, along with accessibility and seasonality. Over the years, the event has also been an opportunity to focus on the potential for mountain tourism to contribute to sustainable and inclusive socioeconomic development of local communities and their environment.

This year’s congress will focus on the accommodation and hospitality industries. As international tourist arrivals continue to rise, the contribution of all parts of the tourism value chain is crucial to ensure that growth goes hand-in-hand with sustainability. Accommodation and hospitality are no exceptions while they need to respond to the changing demands of travellers, many of whom are increasingly seeking a more authentic and personalized experience without sacrificing quality.

I look forward to celebrating the 10th anniversary of the World Congress on Snow and Mountain Tourism, and furthering cooperation between destinations towards contributing to a better future for the planet and its people.

 

Mr. Taleb Rifai

UNWTO Secretary-General