Muscat, 12 December 2017 – HE Abdirahman Omar Osman (Eng. Yarisow) attending the 2nd UNWTO/UNESCO World Conference on Tourism and Culture in Muscat, Sultanate of Oman says Somalia can revive its culture and tourism as a way to bring peace, stability and prosperity.

Over 800 participants from 70 countries gathered in Muscat, capital city of the Sultanate of Oman on 11-12 December 2017 for the Conference, an official event in the calendar of the International Year for Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017.

The Conference held under the patronage of H.H. Sayyid Fahd bin Mahmoud al-Said, Deputy Prime Minister for the Council of Ministers of Oman, brought together Ministers of Tourism and Ministers of Culture as well as private sector stakeholders and experts with the objective of building and strengthening partnerships between the tourism and culture sectors and enhance their role in the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

A Special Ministerial Dialogue addressed the role of cultural tourism as a factor of peace and prosperity. Ministers from Cambodia, Libya, Somalia, Iraq and Vietnam shared views on the capacity of tourism to support the recovery of their countries. Minister Eng. Yarisow updated participants on the strategies and plans to revive Somali culture and tourism and said “Somalia revives Culture & Tourism as a way to bring peace, stability and prosperity in the country.

Somalis are resilient and entrepreneurs people and since the country is getting peace and stability we are lying down the foundations of creating an environment that is conducive so that our young people can implement new initiatives that can give hope to our people, which in turn can generate job opportunities to our people.”

The Secretary General of UNWTO Dr Taleb Rifai said “In 2016 over 1.2 billion people travelled internationally for tourism purposes in one single year. By 2030, this 1.2 billion will have become 1.8 billion. Tourism today accounts for 10% of global GDP, 30% of the world’s exports of services and one in every 10 jobs. And every tourist is an opportunity for socio-economic growth, for peace and intercultural understanding, for the renewal of urban and rural areas, and for the protection of natural and cultural heritage.”

Minister Eng. Yarisow believes that this is the right time for Somalia to develop policies, strategies and plans for the revival of Tourism as it is one of the largest industries on the globe. Tourism is real, it grows rapidly and it is very important for job creation to our young people and economic growth that the country is working so hard to become self sufficient in the near future.

Minister Eng. Yarisow concluded his remarks to state that Somalia has a vibrant Somali Diaspora that can bridge the gap to promote culture and tourism and by bringing their friends to Somalia as a tourists is the best approach to promote our culture and tourism. Somalis love travel and tourism and that is an asset that the country has.