The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), The Netherlands Centre for the Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries (CBI), and Travelife have kicked off their co-operation with a series of training courses for tour operators and advisors.
The trainings took place following the signing of the three-party Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between CBI, PATA and Travelife on May 18, 2014 in Zhuhai, China at the PATA Annual General Meeting.
At PATA headquarters in Bangkok, Travelife trained 15 regional tour operators, sustainability advisors, and auditors. These advisors and auditors will instruct PATA members who wish to work towards sustainability. In separate two-day training programmes, more than 20 Asian tour operators learned how to integrate sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) principles as part of their normal businesses practices. Furthermore, a regional working group will be formed in order to jointly develop Asia-specific implementation tools and suppliers standards.
In Yangon, more than 80 Myanmar travel companies, 60 hotels, and 18 PATA members joined three 2-day training courses organized in co-operation with the Union of Myanmar Travel Association (UMTA) and the Myanmar Hoteliers Association. As part of its Tourism Asia programme (2014-2017) CBI will work closely with local and national associations in Myanmar, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Indonesia and Mongolia to promote sustainability among their members.
PATA wishes to support its members in implementing social and environmental responsible business practices. The Association unites more than 700 leading travel companies in the Asia Pacific region and has chapters in 41 Asia Pacific destinations and key source markets.
PATA CEO Martin Craigs said, “PATA forecasts that international visitor arrivals into Asia* will grow at 6.3% per year between 2013 and 2018 to exceed the 516 million mark by 2018. With Travelife internal procedures in place, tour operators and travel agents will be able to combine growth with sustainable, measurable practices. Through the strong commitment and co-operation between leading PATA members we will be able to set an example for the industry at large.”
Note: * Asia is defined as including destinations in Northeast, South and Southeast Asia