Integration of Tourism into National Emergency Structures and Processes

The importance of travel and tourism as a social and economic activity is growing constantly and has reached, at the international level, dimensions that haven’t been seen before. Tourism is therefore used in many countries as a priority sector for economic development, contributing to the redistribution of wealth, reduction of poverty and the creation of employment. At the same time, the sector is regularly challenged by crises caused by natural, man-made or other hazards. To manage these challenges adequately, national emergency structures and processes have to be designed in a robust but also flexible manner with clear understanding of the special needs and concerns of the travel and tourism sector.

UNWTO surveys have shown that the role of tourism is often underestimated and the integration of travel and tourism into the national emergency structures and procedures is often only a result of major incidents, which affected the country and caused major losses to the sector and to the national economy.

It is against this background that UNWTO, with the kind support of the Government of the Netherlands, is undertaking a study on this subject.