Here’s why ecotourism, a sunrise industry, is increasing in popularity across the world.
The Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia (MOTAC) organized the World Tourism Day celebration recently.
World Tourism Day is commemorated on 27 September each year to foster understanding among the international community of the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic value.
Ecotourism is projected to grow by 25% of the global tourism market within six years.
Themed ‘Sustainable Tourism — A Tool for Development’, the celebration was held to raise awareness on the contribution of sustainable tourism to development among public and private sector decision makers as well as the global community.
It would also mobilize all stakeholders to work together in making tourism a catalyst for positive change.
“Tourism is one of the major sectors in international trade and one of the main wealth creators for many developing countries including Malaysia, especially in producing economic and employment benefits,” said MOTAC Secretary General Datuk Ab Ghaffar A Tambi.
Ecotourism, a sunrise industry, is increasing in popularity across the world. According to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), activities related to ecotourism, nature, heritage, culture and adventure are expected to grow rapidly over the next two decades and global spending will increase at a higher rate than the overall growth of tourism. Based on the estimates of the International Ecotourism Society, ecotourism is projected to grow by 25% of the global tourism market within six years and generate US$470 billion in tourist receipts.
In Malaysia, ecotourism plays an important role in reducing the loss of biodiversity in the region. Ecotourism is able to provide an alternative source of income, becoming a positive economic incentive for communities that would otherwise utilize the forest in destructive ways such as logging and agriculture.
The launch of the ceremony took place at Malaysia Tourism Centre (MaTiC), Kuala Lumpur. Exhibitions of tourism-related products were held, along with a forum titled ‘Sustainable Tourism — A Tool for Development’. Participants included players from tourism-related industries such as the Malaysian Association of Tours & Travel Agents and Malaysian Association of Hotels.
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