BANGKOK: As the frequency and severity of natural disasters occurring around the world has increased, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is ready to assist affected destinations around the world as they look to quickly rebuild and recover.
The PATA Recovery Advisory Group assists member destinations in identifying key challenges facing the sector and providing turnaround strategies during periods of sudden decline in tourism arrivals and earnings as a result of natural or man-made disasters.
“The effects of global warming have only increased the severity and frequency of devastating weather events around the world and we have already seen this take place in India, USA, Puerto Rico, Japan, Hong Kong SAR, and Macao, China, to name a few. As PATA has often talked about the responsible development of travel and tourism in the Asia Pacific region, it is our duty to provide assistance when needed,” said PATA CEO Dr. Mario Hardy. “The PATA Recovery Advisory Group provides an opportunity for destinations to tap into the expertise of our expansive network of members and industry colleagues and leverage their support as they look to recover quickly from incidents beyond their control.”
The members of the PATA Recovery Advisory Group are formed on a skill-based volunteering basis, leveraging the specialized experience and expertise of individual PATA members to spearhead recovery efforts in the fields of marketing, branding and media, budgeting and financing, and safety and security.
Previous recovery efforts have been successful in such destinations as Nepal, after the devastating earthquake in April 2015, and in Bali, after the horrendous act of violence in 2002.
“Climate change is real and those that disagree are blind to events happening all around us, from frequent severe weather events happening around the globe to vanishing island nations in the Pacific. The travel and tourism industry must lead by example and many destinations and stakeholders have been taking steps in embracing practical measures to offset the potentially irreversible damage caused by climate change, such as the banning of single-use plastics, the reduction of food waste, and the use of renewable energies, to name a few,” added Dr. Hardy. “The PATA Recovery Advisory Group is in line with our activities on advocacy, human capital development and sustainability, but one which we would rather not have to call upon. Nevertheless, PATA will always continue to advocate responsible tourism development that benefits, rather than destroy, our communities.”