The inaugural conference of the AMTC (the association of Canarian tourism boroughs), which has been meeting in Adeje today and yesterday bringing together over 100 tourism agents, institutional, business, trades union and university representatives, has issued a closing declaration in point form as follows:
I. The tourism destination, the Canary Islands, has, in recent years, become one of the world leaders in leisure tourism. Eurostat places us in first place in the European regional classification. We are the only region that registers more than 100 million overnight stays a year.
2. We must realise that tourism is going through changes. We are entering into a new phase and if we want to stay on top we have to adapt to A NEW TOURISM MODEL based on quality, diversity and sustainability. These objectives are only possible with a new form of governing tourism: With planning, integrated management and the participation of all active agents in the sector.
3. The development of the ‘Ley del Suelo’ (law on property ownership) and the reform of the tourism law have to take note of SUSTAINABLE GROWTH. It can only be based on an improvement in quality and a legal operating holiday rental offer, including a diverse offer to attract new clients.
4. The competitivity of the Canary Islands brand depends, to a large degree, on innovation, technology and the training of people. The councils in tourism boroughs call for a commitment from all those relevant institutions to instigate RADICAL REFORM OF TRAINING AND EMPLOYMENT PLANS. Quality training and employment add exceptional value to the competitivity of a destination.
5. We will stake the future on an ambitious strategy to advance towards a digital transition. In other words, we are united in calling for CANARIAN DIGITAL AGENDA which will allow us successfully deal with changes in the digital society in the move to 5-G technology. Innovation is vital in our future and to push ahead we need to use the incentives offered by the Canarian Economic Fiscal Regimen.
6. We ask for a strong TOURISM INFRASTRUCTURE PLAN at insular level with particular attention being paid to the seven large tourism zones in the Canarias. The infrastructures currently in place will not be adequate.
7. We need to AGREE TO FAIR FINANCING AND FISCAL MANAGEMENT. With improved balance between the monies earned from tourism and the investment it receives. There also has to be proper compensation for the floating population which saturates the serving boroughs.
8. A CANARIAN SUSTAINABLITY AGENDA. We voice our support for the 2017 Arona Declaration, which stated clear support for clean energies and objectives for 2030 and 2050. We want to see a Green and Clean Canaries plan, agreed to by all the administrations, with ambitious goals to treat waste and control residue; proper water management policies, reforestation and an increase in natural protected zones and national parks.
9.-BETTER AND MORE INTEGRATION BETWEEN TOURISM AND CANARIAN ECONOMY AND SOCIETY. The tourism sector has to be the motor to stimulate and modernise other sectors in the economy: agriculture, commerce and industry. There needs to be a more balanced growth in the economy with a better transfer of the benefits of tourism to Canarian society. Plans to make this a reality need to be drawn up.
10. Tourism will help the CANARIES TO BE THE LEADER AND THE MOTOR of a geographic area beyond what are simply the islands. The European Commission has defined the ultra-peripheral regions of Azores, Madeira and the Canarias over to West Africa as Special Co-operation Zone. The Canaries will be the motor for this communal zone, with cooperative tourism, commerce, economic, social and cultural projects. Our Atlantic Archipelago, as defined by the new statues of autonomy, will be required to stimulate new and growing economic and cultural exchanges in the South Atlantic. And the region will also play a new role in this part of the planet in the 21st Century.
The achievement of these goals is only possible as tourism leaders and with proper governance of the sector, with the distribution of responsibilities between each of the administrations and a clear strong definition of the concept of a tourism borough. Above all the implication of all bodies – public and private – is essential. This includes the citizenry who will appreciate the value of tourism and feel part of and responsible for the process of building this new model from a wide consensual base.