Focusing on the Creation of Relevant Labor Force for the MarketBy Gabriela Mastache | Tue, 10/15/2019 - 16:21
Q: What are CONCANACO-SERVYTUR’s priorities for 2019 and 2020?
A: Our priorities for 2019 and 2020 are focused on achieving public policies that have a positive impact on the competitiveness and productivity of the tertiary sector. We want Mexican companies to become more competitive on a global level, a point that becomes extremely relevant considering that by 2020 the USMCA should already be ratified. We are also focusing on attracting national and international investment.
Within these priorities, we must emphasize the tourism sector. Tourism is one of the country’s most important callings, which historically was left unattended. It was until the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century that the industry started to gain economic relevance. It is important to note that tourism not only encompasses pleasure tourism, but also different types of travel, such as business or medical tourism.
Q: How is CONCANACO-SERVYTUR working to boost the competitiveness of the sectors it represents?
A: We are investing heavily in strategic alliances to provide relevant training. Education and preparation need to be based on the demands of the labor market. In a world where the occupational models are changing, it is no use to continue preparing workers and students as usual. Our priority is to create related strategic alliances with the appropriate players and to always look at the relevance of the education and training provided to ensure it is oriented to the new demand models.
Given the country’s demographic bonus, we continue to incorporate over 1 million young people into the labor market on a yearly basis. The challenge we perceive is that the current and future occupational models will continue to require fewer personnel, so we need to ensure our workforce is relevant for the labor market. Hence the importance of these alliances. We are working with several institutions, and not only with the sectors we represent, to generate alternatives that can generate the jobs that are required by the market; moreover, we want these jobs to be highly remunerated.
Q: What challenges does the tourism sector face?
A: Though the tourism sector has enjoyed significant economic growth, it faces significant challenges that could impact this growth. These challenges include the disappearance of the Mexican Tourism Promotion Council (CPTM) that was in charge of coordinating, designing and operating the country’s tourism promotion strategies on a national and international level. Security is another challenge. The security alerts that the US has issued regarding traveling to the main tourist destinations of the country, in addition to a lack of a strategy to counteract the negative publicity abroad, has had a negative impact on the country’s image. Moreover, we need to follow up on sector development programs. For example, the Program for Tourism Regional Sustainable Development and Magic Towns, created in 2001, that aimed to boost the tourism capabilities of different towns has disappeared. Its disappearance impacts negatively the Pueblos Mágicos program and there is no clear direction on how it might continue.
An important element to consider is that Mexico is well-positioned in the beach and sun segment, with places like Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos and Mazatlan leading the way. However, there are other tourism segments that are just emerging, such as cultural, medical, sports, luxury and convention tourism, that offer the opportunity to generate greater economic revenues and of attracting tourists to different cities that also have the infrastructure to cater to their needs.
Q: What are CONCANACO-SERVYTUR’s proposals for boosting the development of the tourism segments?
A: We need to develop promotional strategies. The country needs to develop a consumer-focused promotional campaign that takes advantage of new technology tools like digital platforms to provide easy access to information, travel reservation and purchase. Moreover, there needs to be a joint work plan between the private sector, the Ministry of Tourism (SECTUR) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (SRE) to jointly develop a national and international tourism promotion model.
We need solid governance for tourism promotion. There need to be mechanisms that align the tourism priorities of the different plans and programs put in place by the three different government levels. We must also improve the implementation of the resources destined for the sector.
We also need to implement a public security model in tourist destinations with an integral focus on strong institutions, intelligence schemes, police development and strengthening of prevention.
Q: How is CONCANACO-SERVYTUR working alongside the public sector to boost the performance of tertiary sectors?
A: CONCANACO has always highlighted the importance of governance, which means working together with the authorities, the private sector and society. We are convinced that there is no way to create the social and economic development the country needs without the joint participation of all players. We think that achieving the growth levels that guarantee larger well-being levels, to reduce extreme poverty and to have a prosperous, equitable and fair country is only possible through the participation of society and the authorities.
The Confederation of National Chambers of Commerce, Services and Tourism (CONCANACO-SERVYTUR) is the business organization that groups and represents the country’s tertiary sector, which includes commerce, services and tourism