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International Tourism Trade Fair

UNWTO activities at FITUR 2011

Intelligent investment in emerging markets and renewable energies, the development of new, innovative technologies and access to knowledge are all decisive in enhancing tourism’s competitiveness and its contribution to global growth, development and job creation. These areas provide the focus for UNWTO activities at the International Tourism Trade Fair, FITUR 2011 (Madrid, Spain, 19-23 January 2011).

1) UNWTO Press Conference – Latest international tourism figures (17 January, 11.00 – 13.00, UNWTO Headquarters)
FITUR 2011 will be preceded by UNWTO’s annual press conference at the Organization’s headquarters in Madrid, at which UNWTO will present the latest edition of the World Tourism Barometer, providing an overview of 2010 results and a first comprehensive outlook for the year ahead.

2) Launch of the UNWTO Knowledge Network (19 January, 15.30 – 18.30, Rooms N111-N112)
A worldwide community of innovative companies, institutions and other public and private organizations dedicated to furthering tourism knowledge have been brought together under the new UNWTO Knowledge Network. The Network is designed to support UNWTO and its Member States in all matters concerning science, technology, innovation and knowledge management and directly contribute to the competitive and sustainable development of the tourism sector.

At FITUR, the 73 Network members, appointed as UNWTO Think Tanks, UNWTO Strategic Centres and UNWTO Knowledge Institutions, will come together for the first time for the UNWTO Knowledge Network Kick-off Meeting. This meeting, to be opened by UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, will debate the role of innovation and knowledge management in tourism; present projects for the members of the Network in Europe, the Americas and Asia Pacific; and provides an invaluable networking opportunity.

3) Hotel Energy Solutions Conference (20 January, 10.00 – 18.00, Room N103)

Following two years of research and testing, the second edition of the Hotel Energy Solutions Conference, ‘An Innovative Energy Toolkit for Hotels’ will present the HES E-toolkit, an easy to use software application, to help hoteliers assess their current energy use and decide on the most advantageous technology investment solutions.

Representatives from Europe’s leading energy management agencies will present the latest innovations in energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies, while HES pilot destinations will discuss the services they provide for supporting and guiding hotels in their energy use.

Running parallel to the conference and after last year’s success, FITUR and UNWTO will for the second time organize a special exhibition area dedicated to energy and tourism; FITUR GREEN (19-23 January). Hoteliers will have the opportunity to meet directly with energy experts and other tourism professionals to learn how a better energy management strategy can boost their business profits and reduce their carbon footprint.

4) INVESTOUR – Tourism Investment Forum for Africa (20 January, 9.30 – 18.30, Rooms N115-N116)
The Tourism Investment Forum for Africa, INVESTOUR, organized by UNWTO together with FITUR and Casa Africa, will hold its second edition at FITUR Madrid to continue promoting sustainable tourism development in Africa.

The event positions the African continent as a destination for tourism investment, allowing destinations to open up and present their offer to potential investors. At the same time, the event highlights the importance of investment for economic growth, sustainable development and job creation across the continent. The Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) will be featured as a special guest.

5) PLATMA: new online platform for UNWTO Affiliate Members (20 January, 9.00 – 14.00, Rooms N101-N102)
UNWTO, in collaboration with SEGITTUR (the Spanish Cooperation for the Management of Innovation and Technology in Tourism), will officially launch its new online platform for UNWTO Affiliate Members; Platma. This new technological tool is aimed at promoting open dialogue, collaboration and the exchange of experiences, opinions and knowledge among UNWTO Affiliate Members.

During the seminar, ‘Innovative solutions applied to the development of the tourism sector’, at which Platma will be presented, guests will also have the opportunity to learn first-hand how companies and destinations are pioneering innovative solutions and using new technologies to develop new products and services and improve management.

6) Presentation of the UNWTO Technical Cooperation Product Portfolio (21 January, 10.30 – 12.00, Room to be confirmed)
Technical cooperation is at the very heart of UNWTO’s work and a key instrument in supporting Member States in their efforts to enhance the competitiveness and sustainability of their tourism sector. A UNWTO Technical Cooperation Product Portfolio outlining the wide range of technical products and services provided by UNWTO will be presented for the first time at FITUR.

The presentation will introduce various technical products focused around four major areas: policy and economic planning; human resources; product development, marketing and promotion; and statistics and quality standards. UNWTO Members will have the opportunity to learn more about the products and services available, how to obtain UNWTO technical assistance and the implementation process for technical cooperation projects.