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Costa Rica Launches Advertising Campaign as a Leader in Sustainable Tourism

Advertising Campaign to Build on Natural Image of Costa Rica

December 11, 2002

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica -- Costa Rica, a country that has emerged as a leader in sustainable tourism, is the first and only country in the world to implement the Certification for Sustainable Tourism program (CST). The Costa Rica Tourist Board (ICT), the governmental institution in charge of tourism activity in Costa Rica, is promoting the CST brand by launching an innovative advertising campaign that not only integrates Costa Rica as a booming tourist destination but its continuous efforts to be renowned as a country that protects their natural resources and its people.

The CST is an international government/private sector program, originated in Costa Rica with the participation of world renowned international and interdisciplinary experts, aimed at improving the method in which Costa Rica's natural and social resources are utilized, motivating local communities to participate in the promotion of local tourism in a responsible way. "The CST is an excellent tool to assist in the growth of the country's tourism sector and at the same time will motivate tourism and industry executives to increase their usage of environmentally safe resources, resulting in financial and environmental savings," said Ruben Pacheco, Costa Rica's Minister of Tourism.

The advertising campaign includes the CST logo, an artistic rendering of half a face and half a leaf, which will serve as a symbol of distinction for Costa Rica, a country that is continuously working to satisfy the needs of today's society without sacrificing the resources necessary for fulfilling the needs of future generations.

This forward thinking will be a great asset to Costa Rica's development as a stable and bountiful country. At the national level, CST represents a new form of competition; a new way to differentiate Costa Rica's tourist industry with respect to their competitors, and one which enhances tourism products that show sustainability, therefore opening new possibilities for international promotion.

Bary Roberts, who directed the process of creation of the CST and is presently Marketing Advisor to the Minister of Tourism, summed it up well when he stated, "Tourism in the 21st century will be sustainable in Costa Rica or it simply won't be. The Certification for Sustainable Tourism program will reinforce Costa Rica's position as a leader in ecological tourism, and its reputation for preserving and enjoying the natural and social environment while positively contributing to the quality of life of Costa Ricans."

Using the CST as an incentive will allow Costa Rica's government to limit the usage of natural, social, and cultural resources in such ways that they could negatively contribute to the destruction of natural and economic activities. In order to grow as a country, regulations must be set in place to limit the exploitation of the valuable resources necessary to meet the population's current needs, such as food, housing, health, and employment. The growing demand for recyclable and reusable products, water and energy-saving devices, and better systems of information management, among others, will be the driving force behind the development of environmentally friendly products and services.

What is the CST?

The CST is defined as the balanced interaction of three basic factors within the tourism industry: proper stewardship and regeneration of our natural and cultural resources; improvement of the quality of life of local communities; and economic success that can contribute to other programs of national development.

CONTACT: Vanessa Bendeck of Porter Novelli, +1-954-745-3812, or vbendeck@porternovelli.com, for the Costa Rica Tourist Board

Web site: http://www.tourism-costarica.com/

Copyright 2002 PR Newswire Association LLC

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