SECRETARY GENERAL OF UNWTO ENDORSES THE CANARY ISLANDS AS SAFE INTERNATIONAL DESTINATION
“We will be using this for the promotion of all eight Canary Islands as validation of our destination, as it gives us international identity as a place to visit safely.”
The President of the Canary Islands, Ángel Víctor Torres, has expressed his delight that the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has declared the islands an "especially safe" space for the 21st century and post-pandemic tourism.
This was stated this afternoon (Wednesday) by the Secretary General of the World Tourism Organization, Zurab Pololikashvili, as he arrived in Gran Canaria to meet the Minister of Tourism for Spain, Reyes Maroto, the president of the Canary Islands, Ángel Víctor Torres, and the Minister of Tourism for the Canary Islands, Yaiza Castilla, with an entourage of 180 people who travelled on a presentation flight to the Canary Islands.
Other delegates have arrived in Tenerife and Lanzarote today on 5 day trips to assess the islands, but this main flight is the official UNWTO test flight to Gran Canaria.
Torres said in a press conference in Las Palmas “This Airport, like the rest, was rendered inoperative on March 14th by the State Of Alarm, and today, July 8th, we have the good news from the UNWTO that they have chosen the Canary Islands as a European destination to test the sanitary and tourist strength in our archipelago.”
Torres said he hopes that this recognition for the islands will help attract tourists to the region, so that arrival numbers can be recovered “sooner rather than later”, and emphasized that the work being carried out by the Ministry of Tourism is "especially important", as well as the fact that the Canary Islands have been chosen by the UNWTO as a "particularly safe" space for 21st century and post-pandemic tourism, adding "today is a happy day after all these months of suffering."
The regional councillor for tourism, Yaiza Castilla, expressed her satisfaction at the fact that the UNWTO came today, "which verifies what we are doing in the Canary Islands with the Canarias Fortaleza project, and we will be using this for the promotion of all eight Canary Islands as validation of our destination, as it gives us international identity as a place to visit safely.”
An official announcement and recognition will take place at a presentation ceremony later in the week.