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Tourism and the SDGs

SDG Tracker 

Realising the Future We Want[1]

“The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development commits Member States, through Sustainable Development Goal Target 8.9 to “devise and implement policies to promote sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products”. The importance of sustainable tourism, as a driver for jobs creation and the promotion of local culture and products, is also highlighted in Sustainable Development Goal target 12.b.

Tourism is also identified as one of the tools to “increase [by 2030] the economic benefits to Small Island developing States and least developed countries”, through Sustainable Development Goals Target 14.7.

Sustainable tourism is defined by paragraph 130 of The Future We Want as a significant contributor “to the three dimensions of sustainable development” thanks to its close linkages to other sectors and its ability to create decent jobs and generate trade opportunities. Therefore, Member States recognize “the need to support sustainable tourism activities and relevant capacity-building that promote environmental awareness, conserve and protect the environment, respect wildlife, flora, biodiversity, ecosystems and cultural diversity, and improve the welfare and livelihoods of local communities”.

Paragraph 130 of the Future We Want also focuses on the role of sustainable tourism as a key contributor for sustainable development in developing countries.

More specifically, Member States, through paragraph 131, “encourage the promotion of investment in sustainable tourism, including eco-tourism and cultural tourism, which may include creating small and medium sized enterprises and facilitating access to finance, including through microcredit initiatives for the poor, indigenous peoples and local communities in areas with high eco-tourism potential”. In this regard, Member States also stress the importance of establishing, guidelines and regulations, in accordance with national priorities and legislation for promoting and supporting sustainable tourism.”[2]

There was a good introduction to Tourism and the SDGs at WTM London in November - watch the video

Márcio Favilla, Executive Director UNWTO
Jane Ashton Director of Sustainable Development, TUI Group
Peter Burrell Managing Director Exodus
Kate Gibson, VP for Corporate Responsibility at IHG,
Glynn O’Leary CEO Transfrontier Parks Destinations

TUI have mapped out how their strategy matches the SDGs



[1] https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/futurewewant.html

[2] https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/topics/sustainabletourism

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