The FINANCIAL -- The Georgian Vice Premier, Foreign Minister Mikheil Janelidze spoke before the participants of the 22nd General Assembly of the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).
The Vice Premier welcomed the launch of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development as a key to achieving economic prosperity, advancing people-to-people contacts and embracing different cultures, according to MFA of Georgia.
Given the rising role of tourism worldwide, there is a global trend of travel facilitation, advancement in connectivity between countries, and various services - Mikheil Janelidze said.
According to him, tourism has become one of the most dynamically developing sectors in Georgia. In 2016, the number of international arrivals overstepped the six million mark for the first time.
“I want to emphasize, that today, the tourism sector is one of the key contributors to Georgia’s economic growth, prosperity, employment, infrastructural development and realization of SDGs. We have achieved many successes through this sector, and have grown to become one of the examples of how a small nation can transform itself through development of tourism.
Developing Georgia’s brand and positioning its tourism industry on the international market is one of the top priorities for our Government. In this regard, we are actively enhancing our tourism infrastructure and facilitating the implementation of tourism promotional activities both on domestic and international markets” – the Minister said.
He thanked the UN World Tourism Organization and the host country for warm welcome and expressed Georgia’s strong commitment to further contribute to the development of co-operation at bilateral and multilateral levels.