The Secretary General of UNWTO, Zurab Pololikashvili shared his message to mark the 2021 African Union Day to open the ongoing “UNWTO Month of Tourism & African Gastronomy: Gastronomy – a new image of Africa.”
I send you my best wishes today.
This year, the focus of Africa Day is on Arts, Culture and Heritage. These are the essence of African identities.
And they help destinations stand out – as UNWTO’s Branding Africa work shows us. Of course, the crisis that has hit the whole world is not over. UNWTO stands in solidarity with all those affected across Africa.
And I thank everyone who has helped protect lives and protect tourism jobs and businesses. But we also look to the future. This is an important year for African tourism. In September, Côte d’Ivoire hosts World Tourism Day. And in October, UNWTO will hold our General Assembly in Morocco.
Alongside this, we continue to work with Member States to advance our Agenda for Africa, including at the next meeting of our Regional Commission for Africa in Cape Verde. Tourism can create jobs, provide opportunities for all, and help protect and promote the culture Africa Day celebrates this year. And through our work Branding Africa and promoting African gastronomy, we can emphasise the people and the flavors of the continent.
By doing so, we can use gastronomy and tourism as a powerful too of job creation and opportunity, including for Africa’s youth.
On behalf of everyone at UNWTO, I wish you all a happy Africa Day.