World Tourism Organization (WTO)

World Tourism Organization (WTO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations and leading international organization in the field of tourism. The main task of the WTO is to promote sustainable tourism development with special emphasis on developing countries.

Benefits for members:

- Access to research studies, strategic and statistical information on world tourism.

- Interaction with business decision-making leaders and statesmen

- Partnership in critical projects and other business opportunities

- Exchanging experiences with other members

- Training

There are 154 WTO member countries, seven territories and more than 400 partners (affiliated members).


General Assembly - that is the supreme authority of the WTO. Held every 2 years to adopt budget and work program and to discuss and adopt decisions on matters of fundamental importance for the tourism sector. Every fourth year a Secretary General is elected. In the General Assembly members and associate members can vote, while partners are only observers.

Regional committees - they are six in number: Africa, America, East Asia and Pacific, Europe, Middle East and South Asia. Committees meet at least annually and include the full and associate members while partners have observer status.

The Secretariat is headed by Secretary General Taleb Rifai, SOT (Jordan) and is responsible for fulfilling the program objectives. The official languages ​​of the WTO are English, Spanish, Arabic, French and Russian.

Executive Council of WTO - operational governing body composed of 31 members for a term of 4 years. Half of its composition is renewed each General Assembly. The Executive Board shall meet at least twice a year, they are guided by a President and two Vice-Presidents.

Subsidiary bodies to the Executive Board committees.

Committees - advise management and program alarm in the following areas: budget and finance, statistics, marketing, combating poverty.

Bulgaria and the WTO:

Bulgaria is a full member of WTO on January 21, 1976 within the framework of WTO the country is part of the European Regional Commission. Bulgaria's cooperation with the World Tourism Organization is mainly in assisting state policy for sustainable tourism development, towards following the global trends of tourism development and presentation of Bulgaria as an attractive year-round tourist destination.

In 1985 Bulgaria was host of the sixth session of the General Assembly. Mr. Lachezar Avramov was elected President of the session, and during the event the Bill of Rights in tourism and the Tourist Code were adopted.
In the years 1982-1985 and 2003-2007 the Republic of Bulgaria is a member of the Executive Board.
In the period 13-14 June 2005 in the resort Sunny Beach was held the 75th session of the Executive Council of WTO.
In November 2007 the Republic of Bulgaria was elected Vice-Chairman of the Regional Committee for Europe 2007-2009 and a member of the Committee on Budget and Finance for the period 2007-2011
In November 2007, Mr. Stanislav Novakov was elected a member and Vice Chairman of the Programming Committee of the WTO for the period 2007-2009 and as an individual (member) from 2009-2011
For the period 2009-2013 Bulgaria is a member of the Executive Council of WTO.
In the spring of 2010 Bulgaria hosted the 51st meeting of the Commission of Europe.

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