For this reason, the UNWTO calls on governments, international organizations and donor agencies to include tourism as a priority in recovery plans and actions. Also, the World Health Organization continues to advise that travel or trade restrictions not be applied in countries where the COVID-19 epidemic broke out. Tourism as a multiple economic activity, different from any other, is an integral part of the sustainable development program and will play a key role in future recovery efforts. The UNWTO has revised its 2020 forecasts for international tourist arrivals at negative growth of 1 to 3 percent, resulting in an estimated loss of $ 30 billion to $ 50 billion from international tourism revenues. Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, the UNWTO had forecast positive growth of 3 to 4 percent for this year. In an updated sector response to the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) offers a first estimate indicating a reduction in international arrivals and receipts in 2020. Public health measures should be implemented in ways that minimize any unnecessary disruption to travel and trade. Predictions for 2020 The UNWTO calls for financial and political support for tourism-oriented recovery measures, and for the inclusion of support to the sector in wider recovery plans and actions of affected economies. According to this estimate, Asia and the Pacific will be the hardest hit regions, with projected declines in arrivals of 9 to 12 percent. Estimates for other regions of the world are currently premature given the rapidly evolving situation. The UNWTO stresses that any assessment must be handled with caution and that updates are likely. Political and financial commitments are key to ensuring that tourism can lead to a wider economic and social recovery, which has already been proven in past disruptions when tourism has proven to be a very resilient sector with the capacity for a strong recovery. Tourism faces the COVID-19 challenge and public health is paramount due to the fundamental nature of the people in the sector, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) said in a recent statement, but called on governments to include tourism as a priority in recovery plans and actions. Preparing for recovery According to estimates, the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic will be felt throughout the tourism value chain. UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili further emphasizes that “small and medium-sized enterprises make up about 80% of the tourism sector and are particularly vulnerable to the livelihoods of millions of people around the world, including vulnerable communities, who rely on tourism.” In recent decades, tourism has matured and is now firmly established as an important contribution to sustainable development, economic growth, employment and international understanding. As the UN agency responsible for tourism and sustainable development, the UNWTO is ready to provide guidance and support to the recovery measures of its members, the private and public tourism sectors, including the organizers of tourism events and trade fairs.