Second Dialogue between the Pacific Alliance and the European Union on the reactivation of the tourism sector

About 25 representatives of the public and private tourism sectors of the countries of the Pacific Alliance and the European Union discussed how to recover tourism.

December 2, 2020 – The Pacific Alliance (PA) and the European Union (EU) jointly organized the conference “Dialogues for a sustainable and digital post-COVID recovery of the tourism industry”, with the aim of improving knowledge and sharing experiences to mitigate the global impact of the pandemic on the tourism sector. The conference took place in virtual format on December 1 and 2, 2020.

The PA and the EU are committed to promoting a post-COVID recovery of the tourism sector, emphasizing a more digitized and sustainable sector. Tourism is of key importance to/in the economies of both blocs and has been severely affected by the pandemic. Losses are estimated at US$15 billion in the AP countries this year and the arrival of international tourists to Europe shows a reduction of about 60% in 2020, compared to data from 2019.

During the event, perspectives were exchanged and experiences shared between the public and private sectors to overcome and facilitate the recovery of the activity. Emphasis was placed on SMEs, which represent approximately 90% of business in both blocs.

At the opening, Brian Glynn, Executive Director for the Americas of the European External Action Service (EEAS) of the EU, noted that “the EU and the Pacific Alliance are well positioned to work together on the sustainable and digital recovery of the tourism sector. The digital economy and environmental issues are the main priorities in our cooperation”.

“We find this second event key, with which we are learning first-hand the experience of the result of the measures adopted after the summer season in the European continent, and which will help us prepare for the summer in the southern hemisphere,” said Angélica Romero, Director General (S) of Multilateral Economic Affairs, SUBREI, of the Chilean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who participated in her capacity as representative of the pro tempore presidency of Chile of the Pacific Alliance.

The list of high-level speakers included representatives from the European Commission (DG GROW), tourism sector authorities from France, Spain, Portugal and the Alliance countries, as well as representatives from the United Nations World Tourism Organization. Also present were some of the major EU tourism associations and private sector representatives from the PA who exchanged positions on the best strategies to support the recovery of the tourism industry.

In addition, during the Dialogue, companies that have developed successful experiences with sustainable and digital models in their businesses shared solutions for the sector.

The national director of Sernatur, Andrea Wolleter, valued the event and said that “this type of dialogue allows us to build the bridges that our industry needs, because it not only brings together a global problem, but also allows us to gather successful experiences and design strategies that help us recover our industry and boost the economy of our countries.