A recent announcement by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) states that the Prime Minister of Samoa, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi will be the Special Ambassador of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism 2017.
“Tourism is a sector that is vital to the livelihoods of our people and touches all the three dimensions of sustainable development, the social, economic and environmental aspects. As a people-to-people activity, it has helped and continues to contribute to the revitalization of our culture, customs and traditional crafts, and plays a pivotal role in the preservation of our cultural heritage and is a force that promotes peace and understanding,” stated the Prime Minister.
“The International Year is a unique opportunity to promote common action and enhance the power of tourism to build a better world. We thank Samoa for leading the initiative for the adoption of the UN resolution declaring the International Year and for its sustained, exemplary contribution in promoting the value of our sector towards the achievement of the 2030 Development Agenda, particularly for the Small Islands Developing States (SIDS),” said Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General, UNWTO.
Other Special Ambassadors of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development include Juan Manuel Santos, President of Colombia; Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of Liberia; Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera, President of Costa Rica; Mai bint Mohammed Al-Khalifa, President of the Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities; Simeon II of Bulgaria; Talal Abu-Ghazaleh, Chairman of the Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Organisation; Huayong Ge, CEO of UnionPay and Michael Frenzel, President of the Federal Association of the German Tourism Industry.