Macao, Macao SAR, September 21, 2023 / TRAVELINDEX / Navigating opportunities for tourism recovery and enhancing innovation and cooperation The opening ceremony of the 10th Global Tourism Economy Forum · Macao 2023 (GTEF or the “Forum”) took place at the Galaxy International Convention Center this morning (21 September). Over 1,500 leading figures from the global tourism industry and related sectors are invited to celebrate the 10th anniversary of GTEF together.
Prominent figures officiate the opening ceremony
The guests who attended the opening ceremony of the 10th GTEF include Chief Executive of the Macao Special Administrative Region, Ho Iat Seng; Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and Chairman of GTEF, Ho Hau Wah; Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Zurab Pololikashvili; Minister of Culture and Tourism of the People’s Republic of China and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, Hu Heping; Director of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Macao Special Administrative Region, Zheng Xincong; Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China in the Macao Special Administrative Region, Liu Xianfa; Minister of Tourism of Italy, Daniela Garnero Santanchè; Vice Chairman of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce, Qiu Xiaoping; Vice Mayor of the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government, Liu Duo; Minister of Tourism of Brazil, Celso Sabino de Oliveira; Secretary-General of the Boao Forum for Asia, Li Baodong; Secretary for Economic Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Maldives, Hussain Niyaaz; Secretary of State for Tourism, Commerce and Services of Portugal, Nuno Fazenda; Secretary of State for Tourism of Spain, Rosana Morillo; Secretary for Economy and Finance of the Macao SAR Government and Executive Chairman of GTEF, Lei Wai Nong; Secretary for Culture, Sports and Tourism of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Kevin Yeung Yun-hung; Vice Chairman and Secretary-General of GTEF, Pansy Ho; Former Vice Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation of China, Former Secretary-General of the Boao Forum for Asia and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, Long Yongtu; Chairman of the World Tourism Alliance and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, Zhang Xu; Vice Chairman and Secretary-General of the International Mountain Tourism Alliance and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, He Yafei, and President and Chief Executive Officer of the World Travel and Tourism Council and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, Julia Simpson.
Themed as “Destination 2030: Unlocking the Power of Tourism for Business and Development”, GTEF 2023 keeps abreast of new trends within the context of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Gathering high officials, ministers of culture, tourism and other related sectors, industry leaders, decision-makers and scholars from around the world, the event navigates opportunities for recovery of the global tourism economy by “thinking beyond tourism”. Participants will discuss new ways of constructing a resilient, high-quality and people-oriented environment for the tourism industry in the new normal through innovative and sustainable international cooperation.
Guests deliver address at GTEF’s 10th anniversary
Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and Chairman of GTEF, Ho Hau Wah, indicated in his welcome speech that at this new juncture, GTEF shoulders the mission to rally the global cultural tourism industry here in Macao to facilitate high-quality cultural tourism development and contribute to sustainable tourism development worldwide.
Secretary-General of UNWTO, Zurab Pololikashvili, underscored in his opening speech, “The Global Tourism Economy Forum is set to be the premier platform for cooperation between Governments and the private sector in the area of tourism for development. By creating the ‘Davos of Tourism’, we can shape the course of the sector’s future around the pillars of jobs, education, innovation and investments.”
Minister of Culture and Tourism of the People’s Republic of China and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, Hu Heping, stated in his congratulatory speech that the Ministry of Culture and Tourism hopes to capitalize on the 10th GTEF to join hands with different countries to create a more open and inclusive environment for tourism development, continuously promote the further opening up of the tourism sector, make steady progress in facilitating people-to-people exchange, and keep improving inbound travel services. Secretary for Economy and Finance of the Macao SAR Government and Executive Chairman of GTEF, Lei Wai Nong, delivered remarks on behalf of Macao as the host city at the opening ceremony. He expressed that as the global economy is on track for recovery and resurgence, it is especially meaningful for Macao to organize GTEF once again and celebrate its 10th anniversary. The Forum seeks to contribute to the development of the national and global tourism economy. It is also an occasion to share with members of the global tourism and related industries Macao’s steady progress towards resumption of tourism and economic activities, as well as the city’s comprehensive capabilities to organize conventions and exhibitions as the “Best Convention City (in Asia).” It also revealed that the tourism economy is an essential component in the progress towards recovery and sustainable development. Minister of Tourism of Italy, Daniela Garnero Santanchè, delivered a speech on behalf of Italy as the Partner Country of GTEF. She said, “I am proud to be here to represent my country, Italy. We, the Italians, live in a small country, but full of timeless, unique and unforgettable beauties and traditions. We are home to 58 UNESCO World Heritage sites and represent one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. We invite you all to use this special edition of the Forum to emphasize the valuable role of tourism in fostering cultural, social, and economic exchanges and synergies. Tourism is crucial to spread the values of peace and friendship among people from all over the world and is crucial to achieving the sustainable development goals.” Vice Chairman of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce, Qiu Xiaoping, gave a congratulatory speech at the opening ceremony. He pointed out that over the past decade, GTEF has effectively functioned as a bridge that connects China’s tourism industry with its foreign counterparts, facilitating international exchanges and cooperation in the cultural tourism industry. It has not only become an important platform conducive to the sustainable development of the global tourism economy but has also made notable contributions to the Macao SAR’s economic diversification. The world is now at a time of unprecedented change, which places higher demands on the tourism industry: first, optimize the development environment and enhance the confidence of enterprises and consumers; second, reshape services and accelerate high-quality tourism development; third, strengthen international exchanges and promote win-win cooperation.
Representative of GTEF Featured City Shanghai and Vice Mayor of the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government, Liu Duo, remarked in her speech that looking into the future, Shanghai will further enhance communication and pragmatic cooperation with Macao for elevated synergistic development, and strengthen exchanges, mutual learning, communication and collaboration with the rest of the world for the sustainable development of the tourism industry, so as to boost economic growth and benefit people of all nations. Other officiating guests at the opening ceremony include Chairman of the Pacific Asia Travel Association, Peter Semone; President of the China Chamber of Tourism, Ji Xiaodong; Deputy Secretary-General of the World Tourism Cities Federation, Yan Han; Executive Director of the European Travel Commission and Honorary Vice Chairman of GTEF, Eduardo Santander; President of the Macau Chinese Enterprises Association and Chairman of the Board of Nam Kwong (Group) Company Limited, Fu Jianguo, together with representatives of the GTEF’s leading partners and other personages.
Keynote speeches deliver visions for the tourism industry
During the opening ceremony, Vice Chairman and Secretary-General of GTEF, Pansy Ho, delivered a setting-the-scene keynote speech on “Charting a Visionary Path: Unlocking Tourism’s Potential at the Global Tourism Economy Forum”. Then Former Vice Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation of China, Former Secretary-General of the Boao Forum for Asia and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, Long Yongtu, made a keynote speech on “China & the World Towards a New Vision”, followed by a keynote speech on “Collaboration for Prosperity and Development” by President and Chief Executive Officer of the World Travel and Tourism Council and Honorary Chairman of GTEF, Julia Simpson.
Diverse sessions inspire new ideas
The 10th GTEF features Italy as its Partner Country and Shanghai as the Featured City, which will unleash the potential of mutual cooperation between travel markets in China and the rest of the world. In addition to discussions and keynote speeches, the program features special interviews, case studies and casual fireside dialogues as a new highlight, with the aim to inject new ideas and momentum into the robust development of the global tourism economy, so that different destinations around the world can gain value from new opportunities and create better lives.
For more information about the GTEF, please visit www.gte-forum.com
About the Global Tourism Economy Forum
The “Global Tourism Economy Forum” (GTEF) is hosted by the Secretariat for Economy and Finance of the Macao SAR Government, in collaboration with the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), co-organized by the China Chamber of Tourism and Macao Government Tourism Office, and coordinated by the Global Tourism Economy Research Centre (GTERC). The GTEF’s supporting units include the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the People’s Republic of China, the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce (ACFIC), the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Macao SAR, the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China in the Macao SAR, World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), World Tourism Cities Federation (WTCF), European Travel Commission (ETC), The Association of Chinese Enterprises in Macao (MCEA), World Tourism Alliance (WTA) and International Mountain Tourism Alliance (IMTA). Since its inception in 2012, the GTEF has successfully established itself as an influential high-level cooperation platform to promote sustainable development in the global tourism industry with a focus on China. To date, the GTEF has received more than 12,700 participants from 90 countries and regions, including delegations from 152 provinces and cities of mainland China, and has invited 600 internationally renowned speakers who are national ministerial officials, business leaders, and experts and scholars to share their insights during the event.