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Minister Derek Hanekom successfully steers Working Group on Official Development Assistance at UNWTO Executive Council Meeting
Minister Derek Hanekom

Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom recently attended the 103RD session of the Executive Council of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) 09 – 11 May 2016, in Malaga, Spain. Among the agenda items for discussion were the following Tourism and Security: Towards a Framework for Safe, Secure and Seamless Travel”.

As the Chairperson of the UNWTO working group on Official Development Assistance, Minister chaired the final meeting of this body. The Working Group had successfully achieved the mandate of the Working group, which was ensuring amongst other things that the UNWTO has a Tourism for Development Facility (TDF).

Having a TDF bestows development agency status upon UNWTO making it possible for donors to use the TDF to channel aid, including existing development projects. In his closing remarks Minister Hanekom stated that implementation of the TDF is a huge milestone in the UNWTO history because TDF will be utilised to implement the three Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for tourism, 8, 12, and 14.

Following the declaration of 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, the UNWTO called upon member states (especially their communication units) and the Secretariat to collaborate in celebrating 2017 as such.

The UNWTO has established a steering committee to implement activities marking 2017 as the year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.  In doing so attention will be focussed on economic, social, environmental and cultural sustainability of tourism as well as safety of travellers.


Mr Trevor Bloem - Chief Director - Communications
National Department of Tourism
Tel: +27 (0) 12 444 6607
Cell: +27 (0) 82 771 6729