Turkey’s Mediterranean city of Antalya hosts a meeting of the G20 Tourism Ministers and main focus is on promoting more and better jobs. In line with the overall priorities of Turkish G20 Presidency – Inclusiveness, Investment for growth and Implementation – the meeting focused on how tourism can create more and better jobs as a means to reduce inequalities at national and international level.
Recalling that tourism is one of the most dynamic and resilient economic sectors, Ministers of Tourism committed to maximize the potential the sector has to generate jobs, particularly for women and youth.
Travel & Tourism is a major global employer. The sector is forecasted to support over 280 million jobs worldwide during 2015, or one in eleven jobs on the planet. Over the next ten years, the sector is estimated to generate 25 million new jobs directly and support indirectly the creation of 80 million new jobs around the world. And most importantly, Travel and Tourism supports jobs across all levels of society. It employs a higher percentage of women and young people than the whole of the economy and provides employment in rural and remote areas across the globe where job opportunities would otherwise be lacking.
“Tourism has a major role to play in economic growth and cultural understanding” said the Turkish Minister of Culture and Tourism, Yalçın Topçu, recalling the objectives of the Turkish Presidency of the G20 and the important role that tourism plays in the socio-economic development of Turkey.
“Today, though our economies have improved considerably, growth is still subdued and unemployment remains one of our most pressing challenges, particularly when it comes to the youth. Tourism can promote more and better jobs, create opportunities for women and youth, stimulate entrepreneurship and the inclusion of SMEs into the tourism value chains” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai in his opening remarks to the Meeting.
The Deputy Director General of the International Labour Organization (ILO), Greg Vines, stressed that tourism “has the potential to further contribute to economic growth and job creation especially in less advanced regions” a factor that “gives tourism a key role in meeting the global challenges set by the 2030 agenda for sustainable development”.
David Scowsill, President & CEO of the World Travel & Tourism Council, speaking on behalf of the Global Travel Association Coalition (GTAC), said, “Our sector creates jobs at different skills levels and in areas where other employment opportunities are scarce. This is why ‘Investment in People’ is one of the four key pillars of GTAC’s Agenda for Growth and Development. Travel and Tourism has a tremendous positive impact on people’s livelihoods, which enhances the community health, wealth and pride. With the extraordinary growth of our sector forecast for the next decade, we can contribute to promote more inclusive growth.”
G20 Tourism Ministers recalled that tourism accounts for almost 10% of the world’s GDP, 6% of global trade, one in eleven jobs in the world. Data from ILO shows that ‘accommodation and restaurants’, together with other ‘private sector services’ are expected to create jobs at the fastest rate of any sector in the economy for the next five years.
Ministers agreed on several actions, including:
– To promote jobs for women and youth, stressing policies that address women’s empowerment;
– To advance the decent work agenda including the issues of wage setting, social dialogue and social protection;
– To create stronger links between the private sector, the public sector and education and training institutions to close the gap between the needs of the market and education programmes;
– To enable cooperation between developing countries and G20 countries to promote inclusive economic opportunities and job creation, with a particular focus on women’s education;
–To promote the integration of SMEs into the global economy;
–To promote the value of employment in tourism to reflect more accurately the opportunities and benefits of tourism jobs and to attract and retain talent in the sector; and
–To accelerate their efforts in the measurement of tourism employment in the framework of the UN adopted Tourism Satellite Accounts and the International Recommendations on Tourism Statistics