Biometrics key to handling growth in global travel, WTTC tells transport ministers

Biometrics key to handling growth in global travel, WTTC tells transport ministers

The World Travel & Tourism Council invited transport ministers attending the International Transport Forum to make travel more efficient and secure by partnering with the tourism sector to implement biometric technologies.

Speaking in Leipzig, Germany to the annual forum’s Open Ministerial Meeting, WTTC President and CEO Gloria Guevara Manzo said that travel and tourism generates 10.4 percent of global GDP, resulting in 313 million jobs. She noted that the International Air Transport Association (IATA) forecasts that the number of global passengers will nearly double from 4 million to 7.8 million over the next decade, while the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) sees total international arrivals increasing from 1.3 billion to 1.8 billion by 2030.

“This growth poses a challenge not only to infrastructure capacity but also how to ensure these travellers can be processed efficiently and securely,” Manzo said. “In order for us to achieve this growth and create jobs, we need to work together to find solutions which increase capacity, enhance customer experience and ensure security.

Technology is the key and biometrics is a solution which is already being used around the world. I invite ministers of transport to partner with us to speed up the adoption of biometrics, and together we can ensure that more jobs are created.”

Tourism officials said at a recent WTTC summit that infrastructure investment and deployments of biometrics and other technologies could enable the travel industry to create 100 million new jobs in the next 10 years.

Airports in China and Australia have recently begun using facial recognition to facilitate air travel, and travelers will reportedly soon be able to use biometrics for paperless air travel in India.

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