INTERVENTION BY MSGR.
I am happy to take part of the seventieth Session of the Executive Committee of the World Tourism Organization.
Today development in the touristic sector requires more institutional and programmatic transparency. This is necessary so as to match long term policies to the relative base infrastructures.
On the other hand, increase in the quality of services and accommodations by private investors is desired.
This is because it seems impossible that globalization only takes into consideration the economic aspect of tourism and is not accompanied by a globalization of solidarity. It is also for this reason that the transformation of the World Tourism Organization to United Nations Specialized Institution is desirable.
With the crisis of modern democracy's political systems, which have historically been based on classical elements represented by laws, traditions, and institutions, the tendency in the political field today is moving towards a new combination where it seems that the determining role is played by wealth and mass communication. These are the elements that influence today's mentality and reflect on the complex world of tourism.
The tourism phenomena in such a context has never been a priority in the choices of the citizens. On the other hand it only becomes the object of political planning after other institutional problems have been resolved which are considered main concern.
Such frequent structural uncertainties and the forming of new power mechanisms have a negative influence on the industry of tourism.
The desired capability of long-term planning could give stability to a sector that suffers, more than any other one, from exceptional and enormous tragic international events. Lastly, the dramatic episode is of S.A.R.S., the so-called "atypical pneumonia", which has determined an almost total block in the flow of travellers on an international level and has brought on the present crisis which is not limited to only the Asiatic tourism market.
The means to confer continuity and harmonious development in the field of tourism is by planning specific and targeted policies; together with paying constant attention to the "quality" and "excellence" in this field. In this way, the growing need towards professionality of tour operators and managers becomes apparent. Educational sector in tourism should represent an essential and fundamental step in all of the mentioned operative programs.
Another important aspect to mention is the necessary political will to carry out such aims. These could be defined as the grounds whereas to build a kind of tourism capable of representing an economic and cultural support, to the ample breaths of freedom and peace to every single nation.
Therefore, in tourism, a fundamental truth becomes evident. This truth should orient all economic activities and John Paul the second clearly synthesized it by saying: tourism is a precious service towards peace.
Thank you for your attention!