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Following nine consecutive years of growth, the EU tourism ecosystem is amongst the hardest hit by the global COVID-19 pandemic affecting Europe since early 2020.

In the Communication ‘Tourism and transport in 2020 and beyond’, adopted on 13 May 2020, the European Commission announced a European Tourism Convention to launch a dialogue on sustainable recovery and the strategic orientations for the tourism of tomorrow, and to guide future work and cooperation on tourism (towards a European Agenda for Tourism 2050). Discussions will focus on three main themes: resilience; sustainability/green transition; digital transition, data and innovation. This exercise aims to establish the first steps towards a comprehensive European policy framework for tourism, with shared priorities to underpin investments, support and facilitate cooperation among Member States and to mobilise industry around our political priorities. 

Given the exceptional epidemiological situation, the Convention was a virtual event. The Convention gathered approximately 600 participants, including representatives of the EU institutions, high-level representatives of EU national and regional public authorities, representatives of European sectorial associations and the tourism and travel industry, international organisations, academics, NGOs as well as other relevant stakeholders.

The event consisted of two distinct sessions:

  • three parallel thematic workshops in the morning (selection of up to 30 participants per session based on participation in the published call of expression for interest); and
  • the Plenary session, hosted by Commissioner Thierry Breton in the afternoon.

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