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IFTM launches webpage on tourism education initiatives for Greater Bay Area

中文摘要 / Summary in Chinese

IFTM has created a sub-page on its official website, to promote initiatives related to tourism education in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (Greater Bay Area). The new resource was established last month and is available here. It offers information on a number of cooperation projects and partnerships involving the Institute.

The initiatives are taking place under the umbrella of the Tourism Education and Training Base for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. A plaque-unveiling ceremony for the latter body took place in December at IFTM. The ceremony was attended by, among other officials, the Minister of Culture and Tourism of the People’s Republic of China, Mr. Luo Shugang.

IFTM is – as a public-sector body working on behalf of Macao – coordinating effort with partners in and outside the Greater Bay Area, for the development of the Tourism Education and Training Base for the Greater Bay Area.

The Institute fully supports the Macao SAR Government’s policies for facilitating and enhancing the advancement of the Greater Bay Area. Macao’s role in the coastal hub was defined by the Outline Development Plan for the Greater Bay Area, approved by the Central Government in February 2019.

The plan calls for – among other things – the development of the Greater Bay Area as a prominent centre for international-standard education. The outline development plan also calls for Greater Bay Area cooperation in developing Macao as a base for tourism education and training.

The Greater Bay Area concept encompasses the efforts of the 2 Special Administrative Regions of the People’s Republic of China, namely the Hong Kong SAR and the Macao SAR; and 9 cities from Guangdong Province, namely Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Foshan, Huizhou, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Jiangmen and Zhaoqing. The initiative aims to advance and integrate development in the Greater Bay Area in relation to matters including the economy and trade, environmental protection, and tourism, and to ensure the Greater Bay Area is globally competitive.

Multipronged approach

IFTM has assumed a significant role in assisting the development of the Greater Bay Area, by helping the tourism and hospitality industry in the city cluster to thrive.

In October 2018, a group called the Alliance for Developing Macao into the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Tourism Education and Training Base was formed. The Macao-located coalition brings together 3 local government bodies and 10 local higher education institutions, including IFTM as coordinator. The goal of the Alliance is to support Macao’s development as a base for tourism education and training for the Greater Bay Area.

IFTM signed in academic year 2018/19 a memorandum of cooperation with the Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Sun Yat-sen University, for the establishment of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Tourism Research Alliance. The 3 higher education institutions – based respectively in Macao, Hong Kong and Guangdong Province – aim jointly to work on research related to developing tourism in the Greater Bay Area.

In October last year, the IFTM Tourism Education Collaboration Centre for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area was established. Its founding members were: IFTM; the Zhuhai Culture, Radio, Television, Tourism and Sports Bureau; and Zhuhai Municipal Zhu Kuan Group Holdings Co., Ltd. The Centre offers educational programmes to help develop tourism in the Greater Bay Area by enhancing the qualifications and skills of people working in the field, and by arranging exchanges.

The Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Tourism Vocational Education Alliance was established last December, with IFTM as one of its members. It promotes exchanges of staff, resources and information among the various stakeholders in the tourism industry in the Greater Bay Area.

The IFTM Hengqin Training Base was established in the same month, following a framework agreement on cooperation between IFTM and the Management Committee of the Hengqin New Area, in Zhuhai. Its first vocational tourism training course, in January, focused on the development of vocational training standards, using as reference the Macao Occupational Skills Recognition System (MORS), promoted by IFTM.

In March, the Institute launched a series of online seminars for tourist guides. Two free online seminars were held, attracting an aggregate online audience of about 300 tourist guides in the Greater Bay Area. The seminars were meant to help workers in the field of tourism improve their skills during a slump in business coinciding with the Covid-19 pandemic.

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