US Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross toned down the Trump administration rhetoric when he told some 6,000 delegates attending IPW last week, “Let me be clear: America is open for business and open to the millions of international visitors who wish us well.”
In this week’s digital edition of Canadian Travel Press, Mike Dunbar reports that Ross’ surprisingly upbeat remarks drew cheers and applause, especially when he declared, “This administration recognizes the power of travel as an enabling platform for business, a gateway to education and a bridge to bring people together.”
Ross told trade show attendees from some 70 countries, “Travel and tourism accounts for one third of US services exports and 11% of US exports overall.”
And he added, “If there is one message for you to take away today it is this: “We are taking every measure to ensure that the US remains competitive for providing a quality visitor experience, while also ensuring the safety of both our citizens and our guests. Without safety and security there will be little travel.”
Following the upbeat speech, US Travel president Roger Dow stated, “In honesty, a number of people probably walked into the room with misgivings about this administration’s views on international visitors but I’m certain they walked out encouraged that the US government grasps the immense value of inbound travellers.”
Dow added, “He has a deep understanding of the economic importance of travel and international travel in particular. His remarks nailed the critical need to balance robust and effective security with facilitating convenient travel for legitimate business and leisure visitors.”
And he declared, “Coupled with economic news that international travel to the US continued its prolonged uptick at the end of the first quarter I’m as optimistic as ever that travel will continue its role as a significant growth engine for the US economy, jobs and exports.”
For the full story, check out this week’s digital edition of Canadian Travel Press.