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16 December 2020 News flash

Annual meeting of Tourist and Convention Authority’s promotional offices : Review, strategy and responsible tourism

©Direction de la Communication / Michael Alesi

Monday 14 December saw the start of the annual meeting of the offices which promote the Principality abroad, led by Monaco’s Tourist and Convention Authority.

Due to the health situation, representatives from the international offices did not travel to attend this year’s event; instead the meetings, spread throughout the week, are being held virtually via a digital platform. Only the opening presentation, “Review and Strategy”, held at the Grimaldi Forum, mixed in person and virtual attendance.

In the presence of Jean Castellini, Minister of Finance and Economy, and H.E. Marie-Pascale Boisson, Monaco’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to China, Guy Antognelli, Director of the Tourist and Convention Authority, gave a detailed review of the impact of the pandemic on Destination Monaco and set out the major themes of the strategies that have been put in place for 2021.

“COVID-19 has hit global tourism much harder than the last two major crises, in 2001–2002 following the attacks on the World Trade Center, and in 2009 in the wake of the financial crisis,” Mr Antognelli said, noting that the annual figures for Monaco as at the end of November 2020 showed “a 59% decrease in rooms sold, a 10.5% reduction in rates, and revenue per room which has plummeted by 63%.”

Mr Antognelli highlighted the work that had been done by the Tourist and Convention Authority’s teams both in Monaco and abroad, and the mobilisation of those working in the Monegasque tourism industry “who have all been willing to constantly adapt in order to maintain the destination’s position and seize the opportunities created by the crisis while planning for the recovery.” He then presented the different strategic priorities and phases in the quest to win back a market, the rebuilding of which “requires rethinking the model”.

A common strand running through the main areas for consideration was social and environmental responsibility. Accompanied by the Mission for Energy Transition, the Department of the Environment and the Principality’s various tourism partners, and with support from the consultancy firm François Tourisme Consultants, which specialises in sustainable development, the Tourist and Convention Authority began work on drafting a white paper. This focuses on responsible tourism in commercial development strategies in order to “participate, directly or indirectly, in all of the Sustainable Development Goals established by the United Nations (...) [and] to better respond to demand from an environmentally aware clientele that has exacting standards in this area.”

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