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WTTC unveils Impressive Line-up of Keynote Speakers for 23rd Global Summit in Rwanda

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) gears up for its stellar 23rd Global Summit in Kigali this week (1-3 Nov), with Ivorian footballing legend Didier Drogba set to take to the stage.

Regarded as one of the greatest African football players in history, and all-time top scorer and former captain of the Ivory Coast national team, Drogba will share his experience of growing up in the West African country, and his continued fight for social progress. After retiring from professional football, this titan of industry continues to inspire and change lives.

WTTC is delighted to announce three Heads of State will also take to the stage at the 23rd Global Summit, and a Vice-President.

Other keynote speakers include Justin Urquhart-Stewart, global economist and renowned business commentator; David P. Pekoske, Administrator of the United States Transport Security Administration; Juliet Slot, Chief Commercial Officer at Arsenal Football Club.

Other notable speakers include Francis Gatare, CEO of the Rwanda Development Board, and Yvonne Makolo, CEO of Rwandair and Chair of the Board of Governors of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the first woman to take on this role.

The Summit’s theme underscores the sector’s significance beyond revenue; its impact on the planet and global communities. Business leaders from across the globe will collaborate on future-proofing the sector, ensuring resilience, inclusivity, and sustainability.

Speakers from WTTC include Arnold Donald, WTTC Chair; Greg O’Hara, Founder and Managing Partner Certares; Gloria Fluxa, Vice Chairman and Chief Sustainability Officer, Iberostar; Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio, Chairman of Heritage Group and co-chair of Abercrombie and Kent, Julie Shainock (Confirmed), Global Managing Director for Travel, Transport Logistics and Hospitality, Microsoft and Matthew Upchurch, President & CEO of Virtuoso.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, said, “We are delighted to announce that such heavyweight and influential figures will be joining us in Kigali next week.” She also added, “This is our first Summit on the African continent. Rwanda’s dedication to the Travel & Tourism sector’s resurgence after challenging times is commendable. The nation’s rapid growth trajectory positions it as an upcoming tourism hotspot.”

Under the theme “Building Bridges to a Sustainable Future” the event will focus on the value of the sector, not only to the global economy, but to the planet and communities around the world.

During the Global Summit, industry leaders and international government officials from around the world will gather in Rwanda’s capital to continue aligning efforts to support the sector’s recovery and address the challenges the future poses to ensure a safer, more resilient, inclusive, and sustainable Travel & Tourism sector.

Government dignitaries, including South Africa’s Tourism Minister, Patricia de Lille; Tanzania’s Minister of Natural Resources & Tourism, Angellah Jasmine Mbelwa Kairuki; and Ukraine’s Tourism Development Chairperson, Mariana Oleskiv, will also grace the occasion.

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