From the 23rd to the 25th November, Reef-World’s Operations Manager JJ Harvey was invited to present the Special Keynote speech on the topic of ‘Rethinking Sustainable Coastal and Marine Tourism Development’ held right next to the world’s longest beach in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. This generous opportunity provided Reef-World to present Green Fins as a proven and effective case study of a public private partnership working to enhance the sustainability of marine tourism activities. The presentation was also a chance to provide important information to delegates from the Bangladesh Tourism Board and other government departments about the urgency of protecting the tourism industry from the impacts of climate change and to highlight key elements of the Green Fins initiative that has made it so successful.
The event that was hosted by the Bangladesh Tourism Board under the supervision of the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism, the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, was attended by 242 delegates from 17 countries around the globe. The two days allowed for many interesting talks and discussions to take place on the problems and solutions to coastal and marine tourism approaches (as well as many terrestrial tourism issues) using a fantastic array of case studies. The panel session provided some great food for thought with many enthusiastic questions from the floor coming from both delegates and reporters alike. All in all the event was deemed a great success with many new partnerships and projects hopefully coming to fruition in the coming years in Cox’s Bazar as it tries to establish itself as major international tourism location.
Reef-World is enormously grateful to the support from both PATA and the Government of Bangladesh and look forward to hearing how Cox’s Bazar incorporates some of the great advice and suggestions that were presented into their coastal and marine tourism strategies helping to drive forward a new approach to attracting tourists to its wonderful beaches and communities.