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Concepts for a sustainable, fair and resilient tourism

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OECD expert Alain Dupeyras at the ITB Berlin NOW Convention on the importance of best practice examples

Short term crisis management is of no longer of any use for tourism during and after the Covid 19 pandemic. “We cannot just act in the short term, we have to adopt a long term approach, develop a new concept for tourism and apply innovations", declared Alain Dupeyras, Head of Regional Development and Tourism Division for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development OECD, in his keynote speech on Friday afternoon at the ITB Berlin NOW Convention. According to Dupeyras the crisis has revealed a number of weaknesses for which remedies must be found. For example, there have been major deficiencies in the coordination between countries, while statistics and the bases for data have frequently proved inadequate.

In future, according to Dupeyras, there is no point in returning to the previous situation that caused over-tourism to become a problem in many places prior to the pandemic. “In some cases local inhabitants were completely marginalised", said the expert from the OECD. If the right approach is adopted, however, tourism can also benefit the local population, for example by making places more attractive and thereby attracting foreign investors. Dupeyras also called for a greater diversification of tourism facilities and attractions in the future, and for more attention to be paid to small and micro-enterprises. As Dupeyras pointed out, the OECD is aware of the importance of this issue and has therefore compiled a wide-ranging report, which can be accessed online.

Dupeyras believes that it is an important task for the OECD to promote communication between countries and to make them aware of best practice examples. He drew attention to Canada and the Netherlands in this respect, and mentioned that sustainable strategies have also been developed in Kyoto and New Zealand. The aim is clear: after the pandemic there will be no more “business” as usual, but a better, fairer, more sustainable and more resilient form of tourism.

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Text: Rainer Heubeck


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