China has initiated the formation of a new international tourism organisation which it says will complement the UNWTO in driving global tourism exchange and cooperation at the governmental and non-governmental levels.
The new grouping, World Tourism Alliance (WTA), is the first China-initiated, global, comprehensive, non-governmental, not-for-profit international tourism organisation, a statement on the website of China National Tourism Administration (CNTA) said.
It was kicked off on September 11, with CNTA chairman Li Jinzao, who is director of the organising committee for the establishment of the WTA, attending and addressing the first general assembly.
According to the statement, there are 89 members in its first general assembly, from the US, France, Germany, Australia, South Africa, Japan and Brazil. Among them are NTOs, tourism companies, think-tanks, international organisations, retired tourism officials and noted scholars.
Li said: “Amid the complex international political and economic landscape, WTA rises in response to the soaring global tourism development and expectations of countries and the global tourism community.
“Believing that tourism makes the world a better place, the alliance is aimed to promote development, poverty reduction and peace through tourism by extending consensus, sharing experience and deepening cooperation in driving the sustainable, inclusive development of the global tourism industry.”
The goal is for WTA to grow into a platform for developing and issuing international tourism standards, facilitating international tourism investment and cooperation, promoting international tourism products, studying the development of global industry, and offering membership services.
Li also hopes the alliance would adhere to China’s Tourism Plus strategy and drive the integration of tourism and related industries, as well as contribute to its Belt and Road Initiative.
WTA comprises the general assembly, a board of directors and a secretariat to be headquartered in China in an unspecified city. Its working languages are Chinese, English, French, Russian, Arabic and Spanish, the statement said.