On May 22, 2019, the Global Green Growth Institute – GGGI, with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway and in articulation with the Tourism Director Office and the Secretariat of Environment and Sustainable Development of the Government of Nariño, gathered approximately 260 key stakeholders from the tourism sector value chain and community leaders for the International Meeting: “Nature Tourism, Green Growth engine for Nariño”.
Experts from Costa Rica, Peru, Ecuador, and the United States shared their experiences and lessons learned from effective planning and implementation of nature-based tourism growth strategies. Likewise, national strategies for community-led approaches in post-conflict zones, such as Caño Cristales, Miravalle, and the Ñambí River Reserve, were shared as success stories where tourism has become a conservation strategy of the environment and peace in Colombia. These successful strategies contribute to Nariño’s development of a sustainable, competitive, and inclusive tourism industry.
The dialogue provided a participatory space for the community to articulate Nariño’s potential and set of needs to achieve sustainable green growth through the economic development of their natural attractions. Oscar Alzate—the Nariño Government’s Secretary of Environment—attended the meeting and expressed his enthusiastic support, stating: “Nature Tourism is a commitment to the conservation of our natural resources and to peace”. Similarly, Paola Bacca, Nariño´s Tourism Director, stated: “Developing this strategic plan is key because it increases awareness of how important environmental conservation is in the region. We hope that through the development of Nariño’s Nature tourism industry, its natural and cultural capital can be preserved while generating inclusive, sustainable economic growth”.
With the development of Nature Tourism, it is expected that through collective work, it will be possible to preserve the natural and cultural capital of Nariño, generating economic growth that guarantees social inclusion, community empowerment and the generation of green jobs.
GGGI Country Representative
Bogotá, Colombia firstname.lastname@example.org