msc logoCorporate Information & Media Roommenu icon



Copenhagen, Denmark, 12 June 2023 - The tourism sector has the potential to create a ‘virtuous circle’ at destination level and so play a key role in maintaining healthy ocean ecosystems.

To mark the official naming of the ship MSC Euribia, MSC’s most energy-efficient to date, international leaders from the worlds of science, policymaking and business explored new paths to responsible consumption and production in tourism as a key strategy for transitioning to a regenerative, carbon-neutral and circular blue economy.

UN and Private Sector: Together for Ocean Action

The expert panel discussion, organised by the MSC Foundation and UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) to explore the subject of "Tourism Ocean Action for a Net Zero Future", featured contributions from leaders from across the public and private sectors.

  • Opening the event were UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili, Ambassador Peter Thomson, the UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy for the Ocean, and UNWTO Executive Director Zoritsa Urosevic.
  • Representing the private sector were tourism and travel professionals from the USA and Europe, including Pierfrancesco Vago, Chair of the MSC Foundation Executive Committee and Executive Chairman of the Cruise Division of MSC Group.
  • Also contributing were keynote speaker Mike Horn, world-renowned explorer, Amy Meek, Co-founder of Kids Against Plastic, Carl Gustaf Lundin, Senior Adviser at Mission Blue and an MSC Foundation Advisory Board Member, and Frédéric Degret, Chief Executive Officer of NOAH Regen and the UNWTO Secretary-General’s Special Advisor on Ocean and Climate Action.

Mapping the Route to Sustainability

With coastal and maritime tourism accounting for at least 50% of global tourism, according to the Ocean Panel, and 40% of all related export value, the high-level discussions focused on the critical interplay of tourism and oceanic sustainability.

  • Strategies outlined for achieving this centred on investing in the protection and regeneration of blue carbon ecosystems and nature-based solutions that maximise their ability to draw down carbon, while simultaneously advancing the decarbonisation of tourism operations and enhancing the resilience of local communities.
  • Policymakers and business leaders shared insightful policies, strategies and solutions to accelerate tourism ocean action. These included the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative, the Global Roadmap for Food Waste Reduction in Tourism, and the Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism, all building momentum towards a Blue COP 28.

A Shared Vision for Tourism Ocean Action

UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili said: “Finding the right balance between tourism operations and the health of our planet has never been more important. Coastal and cruise tourism have a critical role to play in the global economy.

At the same time, coastal and cruise tourism have a key role to play in the protection of our oceans. This is why the UNWTO is working with partners like MSC to advance Climate Action.”

Pierfrancesco Vago, Chair of the MSC Foundation Executive Committee and Executive Chairman of the Cruise Division of MSC Group said: “Our partnership with UNWTO, exemplified in the 'Tourism Ocean Action for a Net Zero Future' panel, is crucial in our shared vision for responsible tourism. MSC Euribia, our most energy efficient ship yet, symbolises this commitment. We are confident that we will exceed the International Maritime Organization's 40% carbon intensity reduction goal before the 2030 deadline and are actively working towards achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050."

MSC Foundation Executive Director Daniela Picco added “The path to sustainability can only be a journey travelled together in dialogue and concerted action. So I would like to thank UNWTO for their valued partnership in making this event possible.”

For more information contact:


The non-profit MSC Foundation implements the MSC Group’s marine conservation, humanitarian and sustainable development commitments worldwide, utilising MSC’s global reach and unique knowledge of the sea to protect and nurture our blue planet, its peoples and our shared cultural heritage.

Concentrating on four areas – the Environment, Community Support, Education and Emergency Relief – the Foundation promotes the protection and sustainable management of ecosystems, empowers vulnerable communities around the world to realize their full potential, supports equitable and inclusive quality education to foster enduring individual and collective development, and helps disaster-struck populations toward recovery.

The Foundation works to achieve this both independently and with dedicated partners: independently, by leveraging MSC Group engagement in designing and managing projects, connecting communities, raising awareness and mobilising the financial support of thousands of people, and together with trusted partners selected for their strong innovative vision or track record for effective action.

MSC Foundation, Chemin Rieu 12-14, 1208 Geneva, Switzerland

follow us on: LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram


The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is the United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism. As the leading international organization in the field of tourism, UNWTO promotes tourism as a driver of economic growth, inclusive development and environmental sustainability and offers leadership and support to the sector in advancing knowledge and tourism policies worldwide.

The Global Youth Tourism Summit (GYTS) is an innovative and inclusive platform created by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) to harness the power of youth and enable them to actively participate in decision-making processes within the tourism sector. This dynamic initiative seeks to empower young individuals by providing them with opportunities to contribute their ideas and perspectives towards shaping the future of sustainable tourism.

The GYTS platform comprises a diverse range of international events, workshops, and educational initiatives that are designed to engage children and youth from around the world. Through these activities, participants have the chance to learn, share knowledge, and engage in meaningful discussions that foster their understanding of sustainable tourism principles.

Through GYTS, young participants gain a comprehensive understanding of the interconnectedness between tourism, socio-economic development, and environmental conservation. They explore themes such as community engagement, cultural preservation, climate action, and inclusive tourism, among others.