The president of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) welcomed the focus of World Tourism Day this year on the important, but often overlooked, linkages between tourism and rural development.
Applauding the World Tourism Organization’s (UNWTO) celebration of tourism’s essential role in providing opportunities beyond major urban centres, Patricia Affonso-Dass noted that many of the Caribbean’s rural areas have benefited from tourism’s development and are now challenged with working together to revitalize tourism, as their communities have been particularly hard hit by the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
“The Caribbean is replete with examples of how tourism has been key to the development of rural communities. Many of our hotels in rural areas are major generators for other economic activity in their communities beyond the creation of jobs at the resorts,” said Affonso-Dass.
“These hotels have spawned a range of businesses and jobs which otherwise would not exist without tourism, including new attractions, ground transportation services, restaurants, musicians and entertainment providers, fishermen, farmers, and other support services for hotels.
World Tourism Day 2020 will be celebrated by UNWTO’s member states on September 27, 2020, as well as by cities and other destinations and private sector organizations and individual travellers.