New UK Tourism Minister to attend UNWTO Ministers’ Summit at World Travel Market


UK Tourism Minister John Penrose will make his most high-profile appearance yet at the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Ministers’ Summit at World Travel Market, the premier global event for the travel industry.

Penrose, who was appointed Tourism and Heritage Minister following the creation of the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government in May this year, will join the panel of well-respected public and private sector speakers at the fourth UNWTO Ministers’ Summit at World Travel Market entitled – Shaping a Stronger Travel and Tourism Industry – Governance and Business Models for the Future.

This year’s summit is poised to be the biggest ever with more than 150 ministers and senior aides attending and agreeing on a Statement of Intent, which will set the direction for the travel and tourism industry for the next 12 months.

The panel, which also includes Co-operative Travel managing director Mike Greenacre, will discuss the key issues facing the sector, including:

– Mainstreaming Tourism in the Political and Economic Agendas
– Creating a Competitive Framework for Tourism Development
– Climate Change and the Green Economy

Penrose, Conservative MP for Weston-super-Mare since 2005, is also bound to be quizzed on the UK government’s plans around aviation tax.

Air Passenger Duty (APD) tax is increased for the second year running, the week before World Travel Market. At a time when the global travel and tourism industry is under increasing commercial pressure, this difficult trading environment has led to a number of travel companies already failing this year with experts predicting more will follow.

Furthermore, Penrose – who was previous Shadow Business Minister – may be asked to explain further the UK government’s stated aim of replacing APD with a per plane tax, which is expected to generate more money for the Treasury as it looks to reduce the UK’s debt.

World Travel Market chairman Fiona Jeffery said: “I am delighted John Penrose will be taking part in this year’s UNWTO Ministers’ Summit at World Travel Market.

“His input and insight in the role the UK will play in the future of the global travel and tourism industry will be invaluable.”

Other speakers at the Minsters’ Summit include South Africa’s Minister of Tourism Marthinus van Schalkwyk, Portugal’s Secretary of State for Tourism Bernardo Trindade, and Egypt’s Tourism Minister Zoheir Garranah, who will join Penrose on the panel of public-sector leaders.

Private-sector leaders taking part include Jean-Claude Baumgarten, president and CEO of WTTC and Australian travel industry body TTF managing director Christopher Brown.

The fourth annual UNWTO Ministers’ Summit will be held at ExCeL–London, followed by an official press conference presenting the main conclusions and outcomes of the summit.

Also for the first time this year, World Travel Market, supported by the UNWTO, will host the WTM Ministerial Dinner at the prestigious St. Paul’s Cathedral, London. The exclusive evening will host tourism ministers and senior aides from around the world.

For more information on the World Travel Market’s Ministerial Programme 2010, please visit .