5th Exceltur Tourism Leadership Forum

The agenda for the 5th Exceltur tourism leadership forum to be held January 19, 2010 at the Palacio de Congresos in Madrid, was unveiled recently. This represents a combined effort between Exceltur and the UNWTO, or the World Tourism Organization. Held biennially, the conference, will include nine important countries that generate or recieve significant tourist revenue, several government officials, eight of the largest tourism groups, and well-known, highly respected economists. Spain is hosting this event to coincide with the occasion of her Presidency of the European Union, an unprecedented event.

According to Taleb Rifai, Secretary General of UNWTO and Sebastian Escarrer, Chairman of Exceltur, this will be the first major tourism conference of a world wide magnitude. Discussions will involve two areas of concern, the key global issues and necessary changes within the tourism industry itself, especially at the international level. The key topic of this forum will be " Prospects and Challenges of Tourism Recovery 2010/2011." Escarrer has already proposed that there will be no expected, significant recovery before the second half of 2010, but warns that the industry cannot simply sit back and wait for world financial recovery to jump start international tourism. Change and recovery will be examined at three specific levels: global concerns, how the world economy has affected tourism from a strictly European perspective, and a look at the importance of helping Spain to recover her tourist industry.

As the forum studies the effects of the current negative global economic situation upon the tourist industry, it will not ignore issues within tourism itself that have also affected revenue and expansion. Solely blaming the current world economy will not correct the lack of competitiveness that hinders growth in this industry. It is important to press forward by stressing improvement in value and offerings as a way to increase attendance at resort facilities. As visitors become more selective in their choice of how to spend more limited resources, it is up to the resort owners to offer excellent reasons to choose their sites. This forum will address ways to meet new and higher standards. If you or your company is involved in the tourist business, this conference may be very beneficial in assisting you as you strategize for 2010 and 2011. Being part of such a major conference can create net-working opportunities and idea exchanges that could revolutionize your approach to tourism.