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"European Charter for Sustainable and Responsible Tourism" Open for Public Consultation

16/02/2012 | 0 comments

Algarve beach imageIn the framework of the implementation of Action 15 of the 2010 European Commission Communication on Tourism Policy, a stakeholder consultation is open until 20 April 2012.

The consultation concerns the first draft text of the "Charter for Sustainable and Responsible Tourism", as well as several possible open questions.

Charter Objectives

The draft Charter sets out its objectives, beginning with the following statement:

"The purpose of this Charter is to encourage sustainable and responsible tourism policies and actions across Europe, and to promote these policies worldwide. It is intended that the Charter will provide a common reference point for all stakeholders. It is directed primarily at tourism within Europe but is intended also as a guide for European investors, operators and travellers in the conduct of tourism elsewhere in the world.

The Charter presents the general principles and lines of action which the European Commission endorses and is committed to promote within Europe and at international level. It will strive to follow these principles and to encourage the other public and private tourism stakeholders within Europe to endorse the Charter and to commit to respect its principles and implement its lines of action."

The Charter should reflect the commitment of public authorities, destinations, businesses, tourists and other stakeholders to develop tourism in the EU following a set of agreed objectives and principles.

More specifically, the Charter should contribute to the sustainable and responsible development of the tourism sector, by encouraging initiatives aimed at, among others:

  • reinforcing the image and perception of Europe as a set of high quality and sustainable destinations;
  • promoting sustainable management by destinations and responsible best practices by tourism enterprises;
  • promoting responsible attitudes from European citizens travelling within the EU and abroad;
  • strengthening the European social model in line with the Lisbon Treaty and the Europe 2020 Strategy;
  • raising awareness of the industry, especially of the small and micro enterprises, on the importance of following sustainability and responsibility principles.

The Charter should also contribute to reinforcing the ethic values of the European citizenship, especially by enhancing the feeling of belonging to the EU. The Charter is primarily aimed at tourism within Europe, but it should also influence how we as European citizens can contribute to sustainable and responsible tourism development as investors, operators and travellers in third countries, in particular in emerging and developing ones.

Public Consultation

Stakeholders are invited to read the first draft of the Charter (in Annex 1) and send their comments by answering the questions of the Questionnaire (in Annex 2) by email to: by 20 April 2012 at the latest.

Download the Background Document, Draft Charter and Questionnaire in PDF / Word formats from the right-hand panel.

See also the Public Consultation website.

ENAT small pictogramENAT will prepare a response to the Draft Tourism Charter on behalf of its members, experts and partners. ENAT members and others who have an interest in promoting accessible and inclusive tourism may send their contributions to ENAT via the Contact Page of this website.








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General Information

Submitted by: Ivor Ambrose
Author(s): European Commission
Language(s): EN


Publisher: European Commission
Date published on the web: 14/02/2012


Policy, legislation