Ocean and Coastal Tourism: Changing the Tide on Sustainability
Session Synopsis: The global community has set ambitious commitments and targets for achieving healthy marine ecosystems and technologies play an indispensable role in achieving that. Through the Healthy Oceans Finance and Technology Forum, ADB aims to share with developing member countries (DMCs) and ADB operations the latest innovations, technologies, and practical solutions for ocean health, with the aim of enhancing knowledge for increased and more impactful investments. Marine & coastal resources are the foundation for 80% of global tourism (WWF2020) and tourism is a significant part of the blue economy for much of the world, with particular importance in SIDS as pre-COVID19, tourism accounts for more than 20% of GDP in two-thirds of all SIDS (OECD 2018).
The spatial relationship between coastal and marine resources and tourism varies from being a mere appealing décor to being a transitional space for cruising/yachting to being utilized through diving, fishing, swimming, etc. Locations include designated, exclusive-use areas but often are within rural and urban areas across Asia and the Pacific where tourism forms but one of many livelihood and economic activities. Combined with reflections on the policy and broader enabling environment for sustainable coastal and marine tourism, the panel will reflect on the sector’s efforts to date in biodiversity protection, nature-based approaches to climate adaptation, and greener and more sustainable tourism practices while at the same time unlocking the full revenue and employment potential from the blue economy.