The annual Global Tourism Economy Forum (GTEF) taking place online on 9 December aims to offer insights to help set new agendas for a swift recovery, in particular of the world’s hard-hit tourism industry, Chief of Office of the Secretariat for Economy and Finance Ku Mei Leng said in a virtual “press conference” on Monday.
In a video available on Monday on the forum’s website, Ku said that by organising the event under the “new normal” confirms the growth of Macao’s integrated strengths in hosting international conventions in offline to online environments.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created a significant blow to the global economy, the tourism sector in particular,” Ku said, pointing out that therefore the forum this year will be held under the theme of ‘Solidarity and Innovation, Reshaping Tourism in the New Global Economy’.”
Ku said that the forum, bringing together industry players, business leaders, experts and scholars in an “insightful exchange” about the post-pandemic tourism landscape with digital technology and innovation would help set new agendas for the swift recovery of the global tourism economy.
“As Macao’s concerted effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 gradually pays off, thanks in no small part to support by our country, the [Macao] Special Administrative Region government is set to pick up momentum for recovery through measures that support the revitalisation catalysed by the positive outlook for tourism as Macao regains the confidence of visitors as being a safe city,” Ku said.
In the same video, GTEF Vice Chairman and Secretary-General Pansy Ho Chiu-king noted that 2020 has been filled with challenges and opportunities that have arisen from battling a global crisis as it relates not only to global public health but also to the global economy.
According to Ho, this year’s forum will discuss innovation solutions and changing trends in an effort to revitalise and promote the global tourism industry’s sustainability.
“This year’s theme promotes international cooperation, with special reference to the inherent resilience of public-private partnership sending an optimistic message to visitors worldwide at one end, and celebrating entrepreneurship at the other,” Ho said, adding that faced with the new tourism landscape, it was time to bring in entrepreneurial vision to fruition to “break new ground, generate new dynamics, and unlock new opportunities”.
Ho also pointed out that in addition to Gansu as the forum’s “Featured Province”, Hubei province would also be joining the forum this year to share its experience in post-COVID-19 economic recovery and investment opportunities.
The forum will have a joint presentation of Asia Tourism Trends Report – 2020 Edition by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and the Global Tourism Economy Research Centre (GTERC) that aims to gauge new industry trends and support measures for the tourism economy under the pandemic.