Malága Joins UNWTO’s International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories


Málaga is the main coastal city in Andalusia with tourism as one of the most important pillars of its economy. Prior to the pandemic, in 2019, the city welcomed a total of 1.4 million overnight visitors, making it the fourth most visited destination in Spain. To strengthen the city’s ability to guide the sector towards greater sustainability, the creation of a Sustainable Tourism Observatory was agreed and linked to the tourism strategy of Malaga for 2021-24. The observatory will provide regular data and timely analysis across economic, environmental and social areas for evidence-based decision making and to ensure that tourism in Málaga is developing in a sustainable and responsible manner.

Commenting, UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili said: “We warmly welcome the Sustainable Tourism Observatory of Málaga into our global network. The Observatory’s work will generate relevant evidence of the impacts that tourism has on the destination. This will facilitate the decision-making process, which leading tourism destinations around the world are using to ensure the transformation into sustainable and resilient destinations.”

Francisco de la Torre, Mayor of Malaga: “It is an honor for the city to be part of the UNWTO International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories and contribute to this strong commitment to sustainability in the sector. The transformation experienced in Malaga has been based on the pillars of a Smart Tourism Destination, so sustainability is and remains one of the main values ​​to make the city an attractive destination and adapted to the new trends that a responsible tourism practice requires”.

The Málaga Tourism Observatory is hosted by the Tourism Department of the Málaga City Council and will be supported by other departments within the City Council as well as an expert committee. This is the fifth Sustainable Tourism Observatory in Spain, following the Barcelona, ​​Canary Islands, Mallorca and Navarre into INSTO..

About INSTO

The UNWTO International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories (INSTO) was created in 2004 with the main objectives to support the continuous improvement of sustainability and resilience in the tourism sector through systematic, timely and regular monitoring of tourism performance and to connect dedicated destinations, helping them to exchange and improve knowledge and understanding about destination-wide resource use and the responsible management of tourism.

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About The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is the United Nations specialized agency fostering tourism as a vehicle for equal, inclusive and sustainable development. Working with its Member States, international organizations and the private sector, UNWTO promotes safe and seamless travel for all. UNWTO also works to make tourism the foundation of trust and international cooperation and a central pillar of recovery. As part of the wider UN system, UNWTO is at the forefront of global efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including through its ability to create decent jobs, promote equality and preserve natural and cultural heritage.

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