Mr. Tudor Stefan, the new Presidential Adviser, responsible for faith based tourism was the creator of the Pilgrimage route of Dobruja and the Year of Saints Epictetus and Astion celebrations and other continental level events focus on religion and faith as drivers of tourism development and heritage protection.

His appointment comes after the Global Tourism Institution-European Council on Tourism and Trade (ECTT) announced the latest figures showcasing that in 2018 around 300 million tourists visited the world´s key religious sites.

The new European Council on Tourism and Trade Presidential Adviser, Mr. Tudor Stefan congratulated by H.E. Kazakhstan Ambassador Mr. Daulet Batrashev.

The appointment of a religious tourism expert in the person of Mr. Tudor Stefan comes in recognition of the ever growing importance of faith based tourism and  aims to highlight the positive contributions of pilgrimages and spiritual routes to sustainable and responsible tourism, as well as the contribution of tourism to cultural understanding and the preservation of natural and cultural heritage related to ancient trails and sacred places.

On the appointment of the new presidential adviser, H.E. President of ECTT- global tourism institution, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea noted that ”Asia and Africa are the most vital centers for religious and faith based tourism that will capture the attention of billions of travelers in the next decade and will have to respond to the challenge of sustainable and cultural oriented tourism and the nomination of our new adviser in the person of the reputed academic Mr. Tudor Stefan comes in response of our increased global role in the world of culture and tourism”

Lalibela (Ethiopia-World`s Best Tourist Destination in 2015) is one of the most rapidly developing tourism centers.

Mr. Tudor Stefan was presented to the diplomatic corps accredited to European Council on Tourism and Trade and in induction speech outlined that according to European Council on Tourism and Trade figures around 300 million tourists visit the world´s key religious sites every year, making spiritual tourism a significant part of both domestic and international tourism.

Angkor Wat (Cambodia-World`s Best Tourist Destination for 2016) had attracted 3,6 million tourists in 2018 alone.

The event has brought together diplomats from a diverse range of countries including Argentina, Australia, India, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Japan, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Paraguay, The Republic of Korea, Spain and Thailand, among others.

The participants agreed that Asia and Africa are encapsulating the most impressive development potential being capable in bringing more than 200 million tourists and billion in investments funds and cultural protection.

Mr. Tudor Stefan , Presidential Adviser-European Council on Tourism and Trade stated that in managing the religious tourism we must uphold the principles of:  preservation of the spirit of the destinations, authenticity and integrity in the way that they are managed and promoted while ensuring accessibility for all. 

More important religious tourism destinations are usually less affected by trends, political and economic crisis, appreciated the faith based tourism expert.