International Day of Peace: Tourism as a force for development and peace

This year’s International Day of Peace is dedicated to "Sustainable Peace for a Sustainable Future", recalling the outcomes of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, held in June 2012 in Rio de Janeiro.

The promotion of peace through tourism is at the very heart of UNWTO’s mandate as stated in Article 3 of its Statutes: “The fundamental aim of the Organization shall be the promotion and development of tourism with a view to contributing to economic development, international understanding, peace, prosperity…”.

“Tourism is not only an important economic activity, it also about the millions of conversations and interactions that take place every day as visitors and host communities come together. And it is because tourism means exchanging ideas and beliefs that it can be one of the most effective tools to promote mutual understanding, tolerance and peace." said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai. 

Tourism as a force for peace is further reflected in the UNWTO Global Code of Ethics, a set of guidelines for the development of sustainable and responsible tourism, approved by the UNWTO General Assembly in 1999 and endorsed by the UN General Assembly in 2001.

UNWTO is working to understand and promote the use of tourism as an instrument for peace. For this purpose, it has launched the project Tourism and Peace in collaboration with the Austrian Government and the Universitaet Klagenfurt, in Austria. The project aims to build a better knowledge on how tourism can contribute to peace and elaborate recommendations to maximize the use of tourism in peace building, particularly in conflict prevention and reconciliation efforts.

For more information:

UNWTO Statutes: /en/about/statutes

UNWTO Global Code of Ethics: /background-global-code-ethics-tourism

Peace and Tourism Project:

International Peace Day:


Principal Media Officer: Marcelo Risi

Tel: (+34) 91 567 81 60


Project Coordinator Cordula Wohlmuther

T +43 (0) 463 2700 8651