28 Sep 2011

UN stresses tourism's significance

2:59 pm on 28 September 2011

Top United Nations officials have stressed the importance of tourism in reducing poverty and linking countries through tolerance and solidarity as they marked World Tourism Day on September the 27th.

The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, says at a time of profound global economic uncertainty, tourism's ability to generate socio-economic opportunities and help reduce the gap between rich and poor is more important than ever.

He says there's also no better way to learn about a new culture than to experience it first-hand.

The UN World Tourism Organisation's secretary general, Taleb Rifai, says with 940 million tourists crossing international borders in 2010, never have the world's peoples and cultures been more drawn together.