The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has announced that Puerto Rico will host the 2020 Global Summit, held April 21 – 23, 2020. The location was announced by Gloria Guevara Manzo, president and CEO of WTTC, and Puerto Rico’s governor, Ricardo Rosselló Nevares, at the closing ceremony of the 2019 Global Summit in Seville, Spain.
Puerto Rico, which attracts more than 3 million visitors to its shores each year, will host the Global Summit at the Puerto Rico Convention Center in San Juan. Travel & Tourism is one of the leading sectors stimulating economic growth and employment worldwide, the WTTC said. In 2018, the global Travel & Tourism sector grew at 3.9 percent to contribute a record $8.8 trillion and 319 million jobs to the world economy, which should bode well for the island as it continues to recover from Hurricane Maria. A spokesperson for the WTTC tells Travel Agent that 1,700 people attended this year's conference in Seville, and that its members will be investing $3 billion in Spain.
At the event, Rosselló noted that Travel & Tourism are instrumental to Puerto Rico’s economic development plans and that, combined, they have proven to be the most resilient sector in the island’s economy. According to Discover Puerto Rico, the travel industry employs roughly 77,000 people, contributes 6.5 percent to the Island’s GDP and impacts a noteworthy 17 additional sectors of the economy.
“Events like the WTTC Global Summit not only give us an opportunity to showcase the diversity of our destination’s tourism offering, but also facilitate spaces for the public and private sectors to define the future of Travel & Tourism together,” Rosselló said.
Additionally, Puerto Rico Tourism Company Executive Director Carla Campos says that the WTTC Global Summit is an “ideal stage” to show how the public and private sectors on the island are working together to make Puerto Rico a “next-generation tourism destination.”
Earlier this year, Discover Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico’s new destination marketing organization, officially launched a new website with a user-friendly layout and dynamic content designed to engage visitors. Additionally, according to Virtuoso, Puerto Rico’s spring break bookings were up 70 percent this year (10th-most across the network).