On Sept. 22, 2014, Millennium Destinations attended the 3rd Policy Forum on International Tourism Cooperation in Seoul, South Korea. The event gathered tourism experts from South Korea and overseas to discuss ways to alleviate poverty by developing the tourism industry. The forum was inaugurated by new Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism of the Rep. of Korea, H.E. Jongdeok Kim. UNWTO Secretary General Taleb Rifai delivered a keynote speech on “Sustainable Development through Tourism: the Case for Development Assistance in Tourism.”
UNWTO SG Rifai mentioned the upcoming establishment of the International ST-EP Organization, to be hosted in South Korea. This new international organization will be dedicated to the elimination of poverty through sustainable tourism, and UNWTO is working together with the government of the Republic of Korea in order to transform the existing ST-EP Foundation into the International ST-EP Organization, as decided at the 20th session of UNWTO General Assembly in Aug. 2013 in Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Through the International ST-EP Organization, South Korea, intends to support developing and least developed countries to escape poverty through sustainable tourism, while sharing its successful development experience in the 1960s and 1970s.
Seoul, South Korea
Millennium Destinations participated in a fact-finding trip to the South Korean city of Gangjin, South Jeolla Province, with the purpose to design a new tour, in the footsteps of Hendrick Hamel.
Hendrick Hamel (1630 – 1692) was a Dutchman who lived in Korea for over 13 years after he survived a shipwreck on Jeju Island in 1653, together with 35 crew members. After being taken to Seoul for detention, they were transferred to Gangjin (Byeongyeong) in 1656 and stayed there for seven years before being dispersed to other cities. Hamel finally escaped Korea from Yeosu in 1966 with seven of his mates. After he returned home, he wrote an account of his experiences, ‘the Journal of Hendrick Hamel’, the first book on Korea published in Europe.
The fact-finding trip introduced several sites connected to Hamel’s life in Gangjin, including the Jeolla Byeongyeong Military Fortress, formerly used to defend the southwest part of the country for over 500 years, and now a construction site for the Dutch Village Project; the Hamel Memorial Museum and its surroundings, including a 500 year old Gingko tree, and finally Suin-sa, a Buddhist temple which hosts the remains of three temples located in Suin mountain, which must have been frequently visited by Hamel and his Dutch friends.
Other participants of the tour included: H.E. Mr. Paul Menkveld, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the Republic of Korea, Amb. Dho Young-shim, Chairperson of UNWTO ST-EP Foundation, local officials and media representatives.
The Welcome City Lab, a creative space promoting tomorrow's tourism in Paris area.
The Welcome City Lab was officially inaugurated on Sept. 9, 2014, in Paris, France, in presence of Mayor Anne Hidalgo.
This innovative space dedicated to tourism innovation is located rue de Rennes (Saint Germain des Prés).
Initiated almost a year ago, the Welcome City Lab project aims to 'invent tomorrow's tourism' and is part of as part of the Paris Région Lab initiative to promote digital innovation to bolster tourism in Paris area.
The four missions of Welcome City Lab are:
Through the Welcome City Lab, Paris intends to become not only a capital city for tourism but also a capital city for tourism innovation.