The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has announced that its 22nd Global Summit will take place in Saudi Arabia.
The trade body, which represents the global travel and tourism sector, is to host the event in Riyadh (pictured) “at the end of 2022”. Further details are to be announced “in due course”.
The event will follow the next Global Summit, which is due to take place in Manila, in the Philippines, from March 14-16 2022.
WTTC president and chief executive Julia Simpson, confirmed the agreement from the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh.
She said: “Since the very beginning, when the pandemic brought international travel to an almost complete standstill, Saudi Arabia has shown its total commitment to our sector, ensuring it has remained at the forefront of the global agenda.
“It has been instrumental in leading the recovery of a sector which is critical to economies, jobs and livelihoods around the world.
“For that we are grateful and want to recognise their incredible efforts by bringing the Global Travel & Tourism sector to the Kingdom next year.”
Saudi Arabia’s minister for tourism, Al Khateeb, said: “This is a critical forum for the private sector and government to come together to redesign tourism for the future, and it is fantastic to hold this event in the kingdom.
“This is recognition of Saudi leadership to help the global tourism sector recover, and importantly, become more sustainable. I look forward to welcoming all WTTC Members next year.”
The WTTC said its research shows the Middle Eastern travel and tourism sector is set to grow by 27.1% this year, and ahead of Europe and Latin America.
It said its research also shows that, if governments prioritise travel and tourism, jobs in the sector could reach 6.6 million in 2022, approaching pre-pandemic levels.