NEW YOK - Having attracted an extraordinary 30 million tourists last year despite Covid-19, and thanks to the country’s Safe Tourism Certification Program, Türkiye has signed a collaboration agreement with the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), the world’s leading organization for the certification of sustainable tourism accreditation. The signing of the agreement marks an exemplary step toward sustainability, as Türkiye’s government becomes the first in the world to sign an agreement to develop a national program with GSTC.
The Turkish tourism industry will be restructured as part of the three-year agreement signed with GSTC, which sets the best and most widespread standards in sustainable tourism.
In the first stage of the agreement, signed by a Turkish government determined to improve sustainability, national program criteria will be established, and inspection firms will receive training. As of the first week of February, Turkish tourism stakeholders will also join the program. The first stage of the program, planned to be wholly concluded by 2030, will become operational in 2023; and the second stage will be carried out during 2014 and 2025. By 2030, all international standards will be met.
Bringing Türkiye to the forefront of sustainable tourism, the agreement will also meet the goals of The Paris Agreement, signed by Türkiye at the end of last year. Türkiye has launched a transformation towards sustainability in the tourism industry, and the collaboration with GSTC will establish the country as a strong competitor in the international arena.
Türkiye’s Safe Tourism Certification Program instituted an extensive series of measures regarding all aspects of tourism: transportation, accommodation, food & beverage, congress facilities, as well as the well-being and health of visitors, and those employed in the tourism sector. Introduced in 2020 to tackle the pandemic, the program is the first of its kind in the world. To date, nearly 12,000 facilities have been granted the Safe Tourism Certification. Within the scope of the program, the tourism industry, especially the accommodation facilities, will be subject to both safe and sustainable standards. As of April 2022, accommodation facilities will gradually start to implement sustainable practices.