The United Nations earlier declared 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development (IY2017), providing a unique opportunity to explore and highlight tourism’s potential to help transform the world into a place of prosperity and well-being for all.
The conference to be held in Muscat is the official event of IY2017. It will explore ways to build and strengthen partnerships between the tourism and culture sectors and enhancing their role in the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, reflecting upon the outcomes of the first World Conference, held in Siem Reap, Cambodia in February 2015.
It will discuss the synergies and strategies for the sustainable development of cultural tourism that generate resources for the conservation of cultural heritage while creating socio-economic benefits for the communities.
Tourism can stimulate economic growth, create jobs and business opportunities, helping millions of people escape poverty and improve their livelihoods. Culture that encompasses heritage and traditions as well as art, languages, gastronomy, music, handicrafts, museums and literature is of immeasurable value to communities, shaping their identities and fostering respect and tolerance among people. Currently culture is being used increasingly to promote destinations and enhance their competitiveness and attractiveness.