The European Tourism Manifesto alliance, the voice of the European travel and tourism sector, has issued the following statement on the COVID-19 outbreak.
"We offer our solidarity and support to China and the Chinese people during an exceptionally challenging time, and commit to work with our partners in Europe and Asia to that end. From higher education to retail, hospitality to transportation, the social and economic impact of COVID-19 crisis on travel and tourism illustrates the importance of Europe’s relationship with China.
The strong mutual interest in both cultural and commercial exchange between China and Europe was shown by the EU-China Year of Tourism in 2018. We must draw on its legacy in this difficult time to ensure that Chinese visitors are welcome and respected throughout Europe. From expedited visa facilitation to attractive offers, public and private sectors must collaborate to enable and support a strong recovery.
Public safety is the prime concern of governments, and we recognise the guidelines issued by the World Health Organisation, with the strong support of the UNWTO. Travel restrictions that exceed such recommendations may cause unnecessary alarm, disruption and adverse economic impact across all sectors.
In response to the COVID-19 crisis, the European Tourism Manifesto alliance
- offers a message of solidarity and support to China and the Chinese people
- reaffirms the importance of respect and welcome among the European travel and tourism community
- recognises the scope of the impact of the crisis across all sectors
- urges an evidence-based approach to travel restrictions, while taking the necessary and appropriate measures to ensure the protection of public health
- encourages a cross-sectoral strategic plan for recovery."