The country of Rwanda has been awarded WTTC’s first Global Leadership Award. The award was presented to Dr. Edouard Ngirente, Right Honourable Prime Minister of Rwanda at the Gala Dinner of the 2018 WTTC Global Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The WTTC Global Leadership Award will be an annual award which recognises countries which have not only prioritised Travel & Tourism but have put sustainability at the heart of the sector’s development.
Announcing the award at the Gala Dinner in Buenos Aires, Gloria Guevara WTTC President & CEO said, “Much of the world has heard about Rwanda, but mostly about its troubled history. In 1994, it was the setting for one of the worst genocides in our lifetime. But since then the country has gone from bordering on a failed state and a real-world cemetery to one of the most remarkably transformed countries in Africa, if not the world.
Rebuilt on a strong foundation of reconciliation, and powered by the determination to succeed, Rwanda is now a leader in education and in environmental responsibility. Its economy is robust, helped by a focus on sustainable travel and tourism.
Rwanda now welcomes a million tourists a year. Travel & Tourism represents 13% of the country’s GDP and 11% of employment.
And sustainability is at the heart of tourism growth. Initiatives to protect the country’s unique Gorilla population, while generating significant income from the visitors they attract, as well as the establishment of national parks to protect the environment ensure tourism growth benefits not just the natural environment but the communities who live and work there. It is an honour to present our first Global Leadership Award to such an inspiring and transformative country.”