Time to check in: protecting and rebuilding the tourism economy

November 19, 2020

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International tourism is one of the industries most severely and visibly impacted by global governments’ measures aimed at curtailing the pandemic. The UNWTO reported a 98 per cent fall in international tourist numbers in May 2020, compared to May 2019; and the decline in tourism numbers from January 2020 – May 2020 alone translated into an estimated $320 billion lost in international tourism receipts.

With one in ten people employed globally estimated to work in travel and tourism, the industry is among the most vital to livelihoods and economies across the globe.

Governments will need to take centre stage to drive recovery, and work with the private sector to create a more resilient sector for the long-term – considering both health and economic challenges.

At this Global Government Forum/Global Government Fintech webinar, we discussed: the challenges faced by the tourism industry; the areas in which public and private sector collaboration can mitigate the impact of the pandemic; and how governments can harness technology to accelerate recovery.

#RestartTourism #TourismRecovery


  • Webinar chair: Grant Johnstone, Vice President Enterprise Development, Mastercard (Government Centre of Excellence – Global Head of Digital Country Plans and Partnerships)
  • Natalia Bayona, Director of Innovation, Education and Investments Department, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)
  • Hon. Najib Balala, EGH, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife, Kenya
  • Poh Chi Chuan, Acting Chief Technology Officer, Technology Transformation Group, Singapore Tourism Board
  • Norbert Kettner, Director, Vienna Tourist Board, Austria
  • Thomas Deschamps, Head of Paris Tourism Research Department, Sustainable & Accessible Tourism, Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau