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UN Forum Reinvents Concept of Global Sustainable Tourism in Guilin

Intl conference to change how people view and take care of our planet, Yuan Shenggao reports.

This week, dozens of representatives from about 30 countries and regions around the world will gather in Guilin to discuss and examine sustainable tourism, its benefits, challenges and history.

The 11th UNWTO/PATA Forum on Tourism Trends and Outlook kicked off in Guilin in the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. Lasting from Tuesday to Thursday, it carries a theme of green development and harmonious involvement.

The forum aims to rethink the sustainable development of tourism in the past 30 years and discuss the influence of tourism on cities, analyzing the challenges faced by some specific regions, as well as the world as a whole in developing sustainable tourism and its future trends.

It will provide a convenient platform for experts, decision makers and those who have an effect in the business world to exchange ideas and carry out necessary actions.

Topics to be brought up during the forum include the significance of fostering a better understanding among tourists and locals worldwide and developing greater awareness of the rich heritage of various civilizations. Other bullet points highlight how appreciating the inherent values of different cultures directly contributes to the strengthening of peace in the world.

About 160 representatives will attend the event, coming from around 30 countries and regions around the world. The diverse attendees represent several organizations and industries such as the World Tourism Organization, Pacific Asia Travel Association, travel agencies, hotels, research centers, universities, railways and consultation firms.

Numerous senior government officials have taken part in the forum, including I Gde Pitana, deputy minister for international tourism marketing of Indonesia's Ministry of Tourism.

The guests will explore the major attractions of Guilin, including the Lijiang and Yulong rivers, Yuzile Park and Dayu Ancient Town, all representing the culture and landmarks of the city.

Monica Ilie, vice-mayor of the Romanian city of Targoviste, said she was impressed by Guilin and Guilin has set "an example for us on how to promote culture, tradition and identity".

Hoang Quang Hai, vice standing chairman of the People's Council of Ha Long city in Vietnam, said his city, which has UNESCO world heritage site Ha Long Bay, can cooperate with Guilin to explore tourism opportunities. He added Guilin is more beautiful than he had learnt from online. "The city has good views and history. It is quiet and romantic in the evening."

The forum will help reflect the achievement of sustainable tourism in Guilin following the guidance and shaping of other international tourism attractions.