Since 1st January, Antigua and Barbuda has become a full member of the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), where it will be represented by its ambassador to Spain, Darío Item. The small caribbean state is already the 159th UNWTO’s member.
According to the country’s Embassy to Spain, on February 9th, 2021, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda submitted the country’s candidature to full membership of the Organization formally adopting the Statutes of the UNWTO and all the amendments and accepting the obligations of membership in accordance with Article 5 of the Statutes.
The candidature was accepted during the twenty-fourth session of the General Assembly of the World Tourism Organization held in Madrid from 30 to 3 December 2021.
In accordance with past practice, the membership of Antigua and Barbuda took effect on 1 January 2022.
UNWTO Secretary General Zurab Pololikashvili said: “I am very happy to see the UNWTO family growing. It’s been a pleasure to work with Ambassador of Antigua e Barbuda to Spain, Dr. Dario Item, to make this possible. Antigua and Barbuda can count on UNWTO full support to restart tourism for sustainable growth.”
In this period of great uncertainty for world tourism, Antigua and Barbuda counts on the full support of the UNWTO to relaunch tourism in the country. The adhesion of Antigua and Barbuda appears therefore particularly strategic in this moment of difficulty for the entire sector in order to better prepare for a full restart in the years to come.
Antigua and Barbuda’s adhesion to the UNWTO is part of the country’s overall plan to considerably increase its diplomatic network and relations.
In 2018, Antigua and Barbuda opened its first embassy in Continental Europe, right in the center of Madrid. Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Dr. Dario item has been appointed as Head of Mission. Ambassador Item presented his credentials to the King of Spain on January 16, 2019 and is also accredited to the Principality of Monaco and the Principality of Liechtenstein.