Libya Counts on Tourism to Rebuild Country

news_04 Jun. 16, 2013Tripoli (Libya) – June 16, 2013 – Libya´s Ministry of Tourism has enlisted the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) to help implement an action plan to rebuild its tourism sector as an effective way to increase national revenue, create employment, foster national cohesion, and enhance the county’s international image. A UNWTO mission led by Secretary-General Taleb Rifai made a first approach on the specific needs of the country during a workshop on technical cooperation in the capital Tripoli held from June 9-10, 2013.

Libya is counting on tourism to help rebuild the country, in the light of its ongoing socio-political transformation. Libya´s Ministry of Tourism has drawn up an action plan focused on institutional capacity building to pave the way for sustainable tourism development and calls on the support and participation of its public and private sectors to help implement its plan.

“Achieving sustainable tourism is a propeller to create employment, diversify Libya´s national sources of income, and promote our image as an attractive tourism destination domestically and abroad,” said the Minister of Tourism, Mrs. Ikram Bash Imam. “Revitalizing domestic tourism will likewise help foster national cohesion in this significant period of nationwide rebuilding,” she added.

“Libya is a prime setting for tourism development, being blessed with natural, cultural, and archaeological assets, including five UNESCO World Heritage Sites,” said the UNWTO Secretary-General. “Tourism is the right vehicle to contribute to the international repositioning of Libya whilst contributing to its sustainable economic development and job creation particularly among the youth,” he added.

Following a request by the Ministry of Tourism to assist in its tourism development efforts, a UNWTO delegation delivered a first approach during a two-day workshop, addressing issues such as institutional framework building, human resources development, sustainability, image building, and marketing.

Media Contact: Principal Media Officer, Marcelo Risi, Tel: (+34) 91 567 81 60, Email: mrisi@UNWTO.org , Web: www.UNWTO.org ; UNWTO Communications Program, Tel: +34 91-567-8100, Fax: +34 91-567-8218, comm@UNWTO.org