Preparations for GPST symposium in full swing

10 Feb 2015 12:40pm
WINDHOEK, 10 FEB (NAMPA) – Preparations for the fifth international symposium and annual conference of partners of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Tourism (GPST) are in full swing.
The symposium and annual conference will be hosted in Namibia by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the governments of France and Morocco, the Hospitality Association of Namibia (HAN), the Tour and Safari Association of Namibia (TASA) and Eco-Awards Namibia.
The theme for the symposium is “Advancing Sustainable Tourism: Securing the Legacy of our Cultural and Natural Heritage.”
The event is scheduled to take place from 23 to 25 February 2015 in the capital.
The MET Director of Tourism, Sem Shikongo told Nampa on Tuesday that the event is expected to attract about 300 delegates, comprising partners of GPST, members of the public and private sectors, civil society organisations, representatives of indigenous and local communities as well as tourism industry members from around the world.
He said preparations are well underway for the hosting of this global event in Namibia, and the country has great expectations from the symposium and conference.
“This opportunity will give us global exposure and place our sustainable practices on the global map, revealing the untold stories of untamed destinations which span the whole country.
The preparations involve many stakeholders because tourism is everyone's business,” Shikongo stated.
MET and the Namibia Tourism Board (NTB) have been working in close collaboration with the coordinating office of the GPST to ensure that the event is a resounding success.
“The hosting of such international events aims to establish Namibia as a destination for conferences and events.
It also highlights the critical and urgent need for the establishment of a Namibian international convention centre as a matter of priority,” said Shikongo.
The event will feature a day of expert panel discussions on key issues of sustainable tourism, including topics on conservation in Namibia and throughout Africa.