Asia faces travel challenges

MACAU, 25 October 2018:  The challenges of traveller safety, digitali disruptions and luxury travel were debated at the WTTC Asia Leaders Forum in Macau earlier this week.

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) convened its Asia Leaders Forum, hosted by the Global Tourism Economy Forum (GTEF), in Macau, SAR.

“We welcome Asia’s tourism leaders’ focus on connectivity, collaboration and commitment as they continue to develop the benefits of economic growth. said WTTC president and CEO, Gloria Guevara. “China and Asia’s tourism sectors are bigger than their challenges”.

Gloria Guevara

The Forum saw 150 Travel & Tourism CEOs, government representatives and regional leaders assemble to discuss critical issues in Asia.

The event comes at a pivotal moment as WTTC’s Cities Report 2018, launched at the Forum, showed Macau to be the second fastest growing city in the world for travel and tourism.

Across Asia, the sector contributes 9.8% to GDP and supports 9.3% of jobs (176.7 million) – over half of all jobs in travel and tourism in the world. WTTC also confirmed that 30% of  membership is based in Asia.

Guevara continued, “There are three things on which we can do to continue working together: connectivity, collaboration and commitment.

“First, keep connecting with consumers, between countries, and with each other – it’s both physical and digital connectivity.

“Second, we will be able to achieve our objectives by collaborating, whether that’s to prepare for a crisis, enhance security, or implement the latest technology.

“Finally, commitment to growing travel and tourism sustainably and long term planning for growth, are crucial.”

Sessions featured 20 speakers from across the region  – half of them women – including Pansy Ho, group executive chairperson and managing director, Shun Tak Holdings; Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, director, Macau Government Tourism Office and Jane Sun, CEO, Ctrip.com.

The featured sessions explored “ leadership in a time of flux, crisis management and traveller safety, digitalisation, and luxury travel.

The Forum coincided with a historic moment for the region ahead of the official opening of the highly anticipated Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge, which is now the world’s longest sea-crossing bridge at 34 miles (55km) long.