The Secretary General of the World Tourism Organization, Zurab Pololikashvili, stressed that the understanding of this organization with the Spanish Government “has been and will always be impeccable”, and gave as example that both the Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Manuel Albares, and the Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, Reyes Maroto, reiterated their commitment to provide the UNWTO with a new headquarters “worthy of its importance” in the Palacio de Congresos in Madrid.
This project has already been presented, which Pololikashvili considers “remarkable news” and therefore wanted to take the opportunity to “settle any sterile controversy” that deviates from the sole objective of the UNWTO, which is the “promotion and enhancement of tourism among the different peoples of the world, not only to grow more, but to grow better”.
In this way, he denied the news about the “pretension of a State to fight” for the headquarters of the organization for his country, pointing out that it is “an artificial policy”.
Specifically, in recent weeks it was published in several media that Saudi Arabia intended to compete for the headquarters of the organization. Speaking to Europa Press, Pololikashvili said he did not want to comment on this “because no one has ever formalized such a request” and believes that the UNWTO secretary general “should not comment on self-serving rumors, probably spread by people who pursue objectives other than the demarcation of the headquarters”.
Thus, he explained that the UNWTO is a “multinational organization and not dependent on any government“, under the umbrella of the UN, so it devotes its time to “UNWTO member states” and does not comment on “rumors or opinions that hide behind anonymity”.
Pololikashvili attended this past Sunday the Platinum Awards gala, held in Madrid, and participated in the Iberseries Platinum Industry Days, held throughout the week.
The executive pointed out that the UNWTO is committed to “guiding and restarting tourism around the world” in these times that “are not normal”. Furthermore, he has indicated that the UNWTO “is far from stopping,” as it has adapted to this new emergency situation. “Never before in the history of the UNWTO has political recognition for tourism been achieved from the top of the UN, the EU, the G20 and other spaces,” he remarked.