“To get there, we need to increase the number of rooms, remove bureaucratic barriers, regulate legislation and settle the future manpower issue, in all positions in the industry”.
The Israel Hotel and Tourism Conference was held for the first time since the outbreak of the COVID-19 crisis at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Jerusalem and brought together the top hotel and local tourism worlds with legislators and policymakers, to discuss tourism recovery and with the face of growth in the industry, in a world that has reopened to normalization.
“I was selected for the position in November. It was the height of the crisis and now it is May. The mood is rising and there is a change in the atmosphere. It is an honor to be in the hotel industry and it is important to understand that it has the greatest development potential,” said Avi Nissenkorn, president of the Israel Hotels Association.
Minister of Tourism Yoel Razvozov gave a general picture of the current state of tourism and even outlined the horizon and future: “In April, 207,000 tourists came to Israel. This is less than what we saw during this period in 2019, but the growth is felt. In 2019, the industry brought in 40 billion ILS and our ambition should increase it, to bring in tourists who will get everything they need, on the way to 10 million tourists by 2030”, said Razvozov. “To get there, we need to increase the number of rooms, remove bureaucratic barriers, regulate legislation and settle the future manpower issue, in all positions in the industry”.
MK Efrat Reitan, chair of the Knesset’s Labor and Welfare Committee, also spoke at the opening session, speaking about her connection to the industry in matters of welfare and workers’ rights and the conditions under which they will work. She was followed by the Minister for Social Equality, Minister Meirav Cohen, who spoke about the initiative she is launching together with the Hotel Association, to integrate older people – an estimated 200,000 – some of whom are interested in going to work and some need work for a living. “The ambition is to bring efficient manpower into the industry and thus strengthen the workers on the one hand and the need for manpower in the hotel world”, said Minister Cohen.