The U.S. Travel Association, along with some select industry leaders, gathered at the White House yesterday to discuss America's top travel and tourism priorities and advance the goals of the National Travel and Tourism Strategy, launched by President Obama in May 2012 to draw 100 million international visitors to the United States by 2021.
The small-group meeting included Administration officials and senior-level staff from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, Department of Commerce, the National Park Service, the National Economic Council and the International Trade Administration. Participants discussed national policies and programs to bolster U.S. travel security and infrastructure, welcome more visitors from across the globe and, ultimately, position travel and tourism as a long-term driver of U.S. economic growth.
"Today's meeting is yet another example of the Administration's commitment to invest in and leverage the power of travel, which is growing jobs at a rate 19 percent faster than the rest of the economy," said U.S. Travel president and CEO Roger Dow in a statement. "To further build on this sector's growth and realize the Administration's travel and tourism strategy goals, we need to take action on critical measures discussed in today's meeting, including increasing necessary investment in travel infrastructure, expanding the U.S. Visa Waiver Program and reauthorizing Brand USA this year.
"We are privileged to have met at the White House today and look forward to continue working with the Administration, Congress and our industry partners to realize the great contributions created by travel to and within the United States," Dow added.