World Tourism Day 2021 This Year's Theme Explained

Nobody should be left behind in the race to build a more prosperous and peaceful world through tourism
At a homestay in Hankar village, Ladakh
At a homestay in Hankar village, Ladakh

As part of their aim to restart tourism to help the pandemic lacerated world tide over the massive negative social and economic impact, the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) has designated World Tourism Day 2021 as a day to focus on Tourism for Inclusive Growth. In other words, no one should miss out on the economic and social benefits derived from tourism.

According to UNWTO, it is &lsquoan opportunity to look beyond tourism statistics and acknowledge that, behind every number, there is a person&rsquo.

World Tourism Day is celebrated each year on September 27, a global observance day which fosters awareness of tourism&rsquos social, cultural, political and economic value and the contribution that the sector can make towards reaching the Sustainable Development Goals.

It was at its third session (Torremolinos, Spain, September 1979), that the UNWTO General Assembly decided to institute World Tourism Day, commencing in the year 1980. This date was chosen to coincide with an important milestone in world tourism the anniversary of the adoption of the UNWTO Statutes on September 27, 1970.

The date of the global observance is significant as it comes at the end of the high season in the northern hemisphere and the beginning of the season in the southern hemisphere.

According to Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary General, UNWTO, &ldquoThe human desire to travel and explore is universal, which is why tourism must be open for everyone to enjoy. So too must the many social and economic benefits that tourism brings be available to everybody.&rdquo

&ldquoThe pause in international travel caused by the pandemic has made clear the relevance of tourism to our societies. The economic and social impact has been felt far beyond the sector itself. And in many places, the most vulnerable members of society have been hit hardest of all. Working for inclusive growth means getting everybody behind a better vision for tourism. Only this way can tourism&rsquos restart reach the people and communities that need it the most right now and build the foundations for a better future for all,&rdquo said Zurab Pololikashvili.

This year, the official celebration will be hosted by Cote d&rsquoIvoire. Popularly known as Ivory Coast (officially Republic of C&ocircte d'Ivoire), it is located on the south coast of west Africa.

Along with other countries, India too will be observing World Tourism Day through various events scheduled throughout the day.  The Union Ministry of Tourism at an event in Delhi will unveil tNIDHI 2.0 (National Integrated Database of Hospitality Industry) and &lsquoIndia Tourism Statistics &ndash At a Glance, 2021&rsquo. According to a Union Ministry of Tourism release, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will also be signed between Ministry of Tourism, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and The Responsible Tourism Society of India (RTSOI) to actively promote and support &lsquosustainability initiatives&rsquo in the tourism sector of each other.

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