The European Travel Commission (ETC) has invited the State Agency for Tourism Development of Ukraine (SATD) to join the organisation with a complimentary three-year membership.
The decision was made during ETC’s 103rd General Meeting that is taking place during May 18-20, in Ljubljana, hosted by the Slovenian Tourist Board.
This meeting is bringing together CEOs of national tourism authorities from across Europe and ETC associate members from private industry.
Mariana Oleskiv, chairperson of SATD, joined the general meeting remotely as an honorary guest.
“The European Travel Commission remains steadfast in its condemnation of Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine. The founding principle of ETC is to promote travel as a catalyst for peace, understanding and respect. Extending complimentary membership to the State Agency for Tourism Development of Ukraine is an act of solidarity,” ETC President Luís Araújo said.
On her part, Mariana Oleskiv welcomed the decision and said:
“SATD is delighted to accept this invitation… In these horrible times, when our country and industry are under attack, it is heartening to receive such strong support from our partners all across Europe.”
The membership is offered free of charge for at least three years, depending on the geopolitical circumstances, with a vision to welcome Ukraine to the organisation on a permanent basis. This commitment will see ETC support the Ukrainian tourism agency by providing access to all its resources and research data. It is hoped that through this membership SATD will be better placed to help strategise for the recovery of the Ukrainian travel sector once the war ends.
SATD typically works to promote and popularise Ukrainian tourism in domestic and foreign markets. However, since February, its work programme has been drastically altered by the conflict. The agency now provides information about the ongoing situation in Ukraine, coordinates efforts of the Ukrainian tourism community in organising evacuations and temporary shelters as well as job opportunities for the industry professionals in safe regions.