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The World Tourism Forum Think Tank Seen As Another Success Says Seychelles Minister

March 5, 2014 Destination Global No Comments Email Email

Seychelles-TravelThe Secretary General of the UNWTO, Mr Taleb Rifai joined a selected group twenty five representing Tourism associations, private sector entrepreneurs and experts and Tourism Ministers from South Africa and the Seychelles for the second year running at the World Tourism Forum Lucerne Think Tank.

The Think Tank was held on March 2-3, 2014 at the Hotel Palace Lucerne, Switzerland.

2014 World Economic Forum Think TankThe main subject tabled for this year’s forum was “Infrastructure& Investment – New Public-Private-Paradigm” and addressed another pivotal issue – that the financing of Travel & Tourism Infrastructure remained the great challenge of the next 2 decades. The World Tourism Forum Think Tank under the Chairmanship of Professor Geoffrey Lipman of the ICTP and Professor Martin Barth the General Manager of the World Tourism Forum Lucerne explored new creative solutions oriented approaches.

Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture said as he left Lucerne that the Think Tank had been another real success. Meeting key industry players is always important, but the manner in which Professor Lipman managed the Think Tank Discussions enabled a frank exchange of ideas where views from International Bodies such the World Bank to the Secretary General of the UNWTO being analysed by private sector representative organisations and tourism experts. “We all agreed on many points that needed more reflection and we all agreed after lengthy discussions that we had benefited from being present at the Tourism Think Tank” said Minister St.Ange of the Seychelles.

The Seychelles Minister also said that it was always important for hime to keep himself abreast of the happenings in the tourism industry and also in supporting industries in the travel industry as a whole. This 2014 edition of the Tourism Think Tank followed the successful first World Tourism Forum Lucerne Think Tank last year, and based on its conclusions and subsequent discussions at the Advisory Board, the World Tourism Think Tank is now set to become an annual event.

A “New Directions Report” following this year’s Think Tank will be released during the ITB Tourism Trade Fair in Berlin.

Participants this year included South African Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai, Seychelles Tourism Minister Alain St.Ange, World Economic Forum (WEF) Director Head of Aviation, Travel & Tourism Industries Thea Chiesa, Jumeirah President & CEO Gerald Lawless, former Mexican Tourism Minister Gloria Guevara, PATA CEO Martin Craigs, Orascom Development Chairman Samih Sawiris the Chairman and CEO of Emeco Travel of Egypt Elhamy Elzayat, the Secretary General of the Secretariat of the Commission on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) John Scanlon, The World Development Bank Senior Private Sector Development Specialist, Tourism Finance and Private Sector Development Hannah Messerli, the World Travel and Tourism Council Vice President of Government & Industry Affairs Helen Marano, the Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Airports Paul Griffiths, Microsoft GM International Organisations Frank McCasker, Aeroport de Geneve CEO Robert Deillon, Chairman of the South African Tourism Board Frank Kilbourn, the Director General of the National Department of Tourism of South Africa Kingsley Makhubela, the Lead Consultant CNN T.A.S.K. Group Anita Mendiratta, the Chief Economist of IATA Brian Pearce, the President of the IH&RA Casimir Platzer, Etihad VP International Vijay Poonoosamy among others.

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