2017 global commemoration held under the theme ‘Sustainable Tourism'
Dubai-UAE: 28 September, 2017: The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) joined several UAE national and private entities and the wider global community in marking World Tourism Day in cooperation with Ajman Tourism Development Department (ATDD).
Commemorated across the globe on September 27, this year's World Tourism Day revolves around the theme ‘Sustainable Tourism' to promote a new tourism pattern that aims to strike the right balance between personal pleasure, environmental protection and sustainability of resources.
Held at Al Zorah Nature Reserve in Ajman, the celebration drew the participation of public and private sector entities including the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD), the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) in Dubai, Department of Economic Development in Umm Al Quwain, Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), Fujairah Municipality, Al Usra Furnished Apartments and Al Zorah Development Company.
In his opening speech, Engineer Hussein Hassan Mohamed Khansaheb, Director of the International Cooperation Department at MOCCAE, said: ”The tourism sector puts additional pressure on environmental resources in several crucial areas. This has led to the search for new tourism patterns and the discovery of sustainable tourism. Although this concept is new, it has achieved considerable success due to the growing awareness and sense of environmental responsibility among concerned authorities and society as a whole.”
He added: 'Witnessing steady growth over the past decades, the tourism sector in the UAE has become one of the most important pillars of the national economy. With its state-of-the-art infrastructure and services, the country has evolved into a popular tourist destination. In 2016, the UAE attracted around 17 million tourists, with revenues reaching AED70 billion. The sector is poised for further growth in the coming years, especially ahead of the upcoming Expo 2020.”
Speaking on the MOCCAE's participation, Engineer Khansaheb said: “The Ministry is keen to develop tourism in general and ecotourism in particular. In fact, the development of ecotourism is one of the main initiatives of the Ministry's Strategic Plan 2017-2021, the UAE Green Development Strategy and the National Environmental Education and Awareness Strategy 2015-2021.”
He added: “The Ministry collaborates with its partners and stakeholders in the public and private sectors to promote ecotourism and the rehabilitation of natural areas, and to raise awareness about the principles of ecotourism, including sustainable consumption.”
Saud Abdul Aziz Al Jasmi, Head of Events Section at ATDD, delivered a speech on the strategy of sustainable tourism and outlined current and future tourism initiatives to be launched within this framework.
He said: “ATDD conceives and develops innovative ideas and transforms them into tourist experiences. We work to enhance the services and facilities provided to tourists in the emirate to achieve our goal of establishing Ajman as a sustainable tourist destination.”
As part of the event, Al Zorah Ajman, Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, Dubai Tourism Authority and Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) presented their most important tourism projects and initiatives to support environmental tourism in the UAE.