The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) announced that it will hold the upcoming Global Travel & Tourism Summit in Florianópolis, the capital of Santa Catarina in Brazil, from May 15-16, 2009.
"Brazil is not only one of the world's fastest growing tourism source markets, whose international tourism expenditure is up 58 percent so far in 2008," said Jeanine Pires, head of Embratur, Brazil, "but it has also recorded double-digit percentage growth in international tourism receipts for the past four years. And the trend is set to continue with receipts up more than 18 percent in the first half of 2008."
Located in Southern Brazil, 50 percent of the total land area of Florianópolis is conserved as natural reserves. The national and regional governments' commitment to the conservation of the natural environment and local culture of Santa Catarina was one of the key factors considered by WTTC's Board who agreed, by unanimous vote, on the destination as the host of the 2009 Global Travel & Tourism Summit.
"In these challenging economic times when it is almost impossible to predict short-term trends— let alone make long-term forecasts— it is more critical than ever for the public and private sectors to forge close partnerships so they can work together to ensure the longer-term prosperity of Travel & Tourism," said Jean-Claude Baumgarten, president and CEO of WTTC. "Our partnership with the Government of Brazil and the Government of Santa Catarina will provide a much needed platform for dialogue among leaders of industry and government, shaping the future of Travel & Tourism worldwide."
In line with its global policy framework, WTTC is encouraging governments at national, regional and local levels to engage with the industry and identify progressive policy actions, such as intelligent taxation, as well as educating local communities as to the benefits of Travel & Tourism so as to help them through the current downturn.