This event was organised jointly by the Organisation of American States and with the Government of Paraguay under the theme “Towards Post COVID-19 Tourism Rebuilding and Recovery”, and was held virtually on 6 October.
Bringing together high-level tourism authorities from the Americas, as well as private sector, academic and civil society representatives, this Congress is a key instrument for tourism cooperation and policy development in the Americas.
In this edition, strategies to reduce the negative effects of COVID-19 on tourism were addressed and recommendations on "Post-COVID-19 Tourism" were presented. In this context, the theme of World Tourism Day 2021: "Tourism for Inclusive Growth" was highlighted as a factor that should be taken into consideration during the dialogues of this ministerial meeting. For this reason, and in the framework of the seventh plenary session, ISTO Americas President, Sergio Rodríguez Abitia, was invited to participate.
During his speech, ISTO Americas President highlighted that “we have to consider tourism as more than an export-oriented economic sector but as a tool to build citizenship, thereby taking a first step, from our sector, towards an inclusive, democratic and responsible society, which we want for our countries. It is necessary that, from the highest level, we work on new tourism policies, policies focusing on social issues without diminishing the environmental and economic factors, but always taking into account that, without the human aspect at the centre of the discussion, everything else is meaningless".