Sundance Kid to speak at tourism summit

Sundance Kid to speak at tourism summit

Hollywood legend Robert Redford will address the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) summit in Mexico next week.

The WTTC confirmed the actor and director’s appearance at its regional summit in Cancun at the weekend. Redford will appear at the event along with Mexican President Felipe Calderon and tourism ministers from the G20 (Group of 20) leading economies in the world.

Leaders of the WTTC and United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) aim to use the summit to put visa-application reform on the agenda of G20 governments.

They will present research evidence of the negative impact of high visa charges and slow application processes on economies.

The research results will be tailored to show the effects on economic growth and employment in each country.

The WTTC hopes the tourism ministers at the summit will convey the results to a full meeting of G20 leaders in June, attended by the heads of government and finance ministers of the world's biggest economies.

WTTC president and chief executive David Scowsill said: “The G20 gives us the opportunity to put freedom to travel on the table with the simple message that travel and tourism will directly contribute 5% of global GDP this year.”

The event on May 16-18 is the WTTC’s first Regional Summit of the Americas. Mexico’s President Calderon will go on to chair the full G20 summit in June.

Other speakers at the WTTC summit will include US deputy secretary of state Thomas Nides, WTTC chairman and TUI AG chairman Michael Frenzel, Celebrity Cruises president and chief executive Dan Hanrahan, Sabre Holdings president Tom Klein, and VisitBritain chairman Chris Rodrigues.

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