sml IMGL3572October 2016, Suwon, South Korea – The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) is pleased to announce that the Sustainable City Tourism Destination Standard for The Republic of Korea has achieved ‘GSTC-Recognized’ status. The awarded status affirms Suwon’s commitment to promote sustainable tourism products and services.

The Sustainable City Tourism Destination Standard for The Republic of Korea is designed to apply the GSTC Criteria as universal principles into the context of cities in South Korea. The Suwon City Tourism Bureau plans to apply the standards first to their own internal sustainability practices, then seek partners to apply the Standard to other cities throughout the country.

GSTC-Recognized means that a sustainable tourism standard has been reviewed by GSTC technical experts and the GSTC Accreditation Panel in order to be deemed equivalent to the GSTC Criteria. Additionally, an organization that meets GSTC requirements must administer the standard. The purpose of the GSTC programs is to recognize and reward genuine practitioners of sustainable tourism, which in turn builds confidence and credibility with consumers.

“Suwon’s commitment to sustainable tourism goes far deeper than hosting our recent global conference,” says GSTC CEO Mr. Randy Durband. “The city intends to build upon current practices, which includes management of its World Heritage site, to broaden their tourism offerings and manage all according to establish sustainable principles.”

“Suwon has been putting much effort to become a sustainable city, both environmentally and socio-culturally. Now the standard will guide us to achieve sustainability in tourism.” Says Mayor of Suwon Mr. Yeom Taeyoung. “We will encourage other cities to join us to become sustainable tourism destinations. That is what we should do for a better life of both present and future generation. As members of GSTC, we would like to collaborate closely with GSTC and to contribute for a more sustainable world.”

To date, 29 standards have achieved GSTC-Recognized status. The completion of these step-wise programs rewards standard owners for their commitment to sustainability while offering the market benefit of proof that these national standards adhere to international norms.

The GSTC will continue to work with organizations around the world to provide GSTC Recognition, Approval & Accreditation of standards for sustainability in travel and tourism. GSTC-Recognized standard owners are encouraged to complete the Approved or Accreditation process in order to showcase excellence in their sustainability frameworks while further distinguishing their standards and processes amongst other certification programs. Learn more about GSTC Recognition.

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From left to right: Mr. Kim Jin-Kwan, Suwon City Council Chairman; Mr. Randy Durband, GSTC CEO; Mr. Yeom Tae-Young, Mayor of Suwon; Baek Jong-Heon, Planning & Economy Committee Chairman

About the GSTC

The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) is a global initiative dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism efforts around the world. The GSTC is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit that works to expand understanding of and access to sustainable tourism practices; helps identify and generate markets for sustainable tourism; and educates about and advocates for a set of universal principles, as defined by the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. The Criteria, a set of voluntary principles that provide a framework for the sustainability of tourism businesses across the globe, is the cornerstone of our initiative. For more information, visit

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