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The winners of the Best Stand Awards at this year’s World Travel Market London 2023 have been announced.

The Best Stand Awards have been judged by an expert panel consisting of Paul Richer, Senior Partner, Genesys Digital Transformation; Helen Roberts, Leadership Coach and James Campion, Head of Exhibition Sales, ExCeL.

Best Newcomer: Iraqi Ministry of Culture, Tourism & Antiquities S7-510

The judges liked the striking, creative design of the stand, which was inviting from a visitor’s perspective, and which was authentic, evocative and truly representative of the Iraqi culture, while also having room to do business.

Best Stand Design under 50m2: Tokyo Convention & Visitors Bureau S9-318

The stand was praised for being eye-catching and inviting, cleverly lit with lots of small lanterns and neon lights, which the judges said “made you feel as though you were in a part of Tokyo”.  Judges were also impressed with the stand’s clever use of space.   

Best Stand Design between 50-150m2: Instituto Guatemalteco de Tourismo – Inguat S1-400

The judges said the Inguat stand had a distinctive and contemporary design, making the best use of space, which helped it stand out from the crowd.

Best Stand Design over 150m2: Maldives Marketing & Public Relations Corporation S10-202

The stand’s multi-dimensional approach made the judges feel they really were in the Maldives, with stand-out features including a walk-through tunnel with under the sea scene, hanging fish and a beach huts. The upper level of the stand was dedicated to people meeting for business.

Best Stand for Doing Business: Sernatur Antofagasta S2-400

The judges praised the stand for its well-planned layout, which included a variety of spaces, such as tables in an open area and a closed off meeting section, for people who wanted more privacy. The judges said it was a “great stand to do business on”.

Best Stand Feature: Kerala Tourism S11-220

Two giant, ornate cow statues, towering at the entrance to the stand, one in red and one in white, really stood out as being impactful stand features drawing attention of visitors, the judges said.  

James Campion, Head of Exhibition Sales, ExCeL said: “The stands at WTM London are always of such a high quality with so much thought being put into the creative designs balanced with effective use of space to do business.  I’ve been especially impressed this year and the decisions were much debated amongst myself and the other judges before deciding on the very worthy winners.”

Reacting to a United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report today, showing that planned production of fossil fuels by 2030 will be more than double the limit required to keep global warming within the internationally agreed goal of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels this century, Amnesty International's Climate Justice Researcher Candy Ofime said:

"Going into the COP28 climate summit, we see leading fossil fuel producing countries in thrall to the profit seeking of major fossil fuel companies rather than meeting their human rights obligations and commitments under the Paris Agreement. This must be remedied at COP28 by parties agreeing to urgently and equitably phase out all fossil fuels.

"As the report indicates, increased production and use of fossil fuels is not compatible with a safe and liveable future. Climate change impacts the rights to life, health, food, water, culture and to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment of present and future generations. Marginalized communities and Indigenous peoples are bearing the brunt of climate harm today, and this will only worsen with an increase in greenhouse gas emissions from the burning of more fossil fuels.

"2023 is projected to be easily the hottest year on record, yet governments are still irresponsibly fuelling a rapidly worsening climate crisis. An increase in global coal production until 2030, and global oil and gas production until at least 2050 sets us on a course towards further climate chaos.

"This must change to avert a human rights catastrophe. States must take urgent steps now to phase out all fossil fuel production including by ending subsidies, halt all new expansion projects, and accelerate a just and equitable transition to renewable energy. States that bear the greatest responsibility for historical emissions as well as high income fossil fuel producing states must move further and faster, and provide adequate assistance to states that need it to help decarbonize their economies."


The United Nations Environment Programme 2023 Production Gap Report on fossil fuel production also highlights that risky and unproven technologies like carbon capture and storage and carbon dioxide removal cannot be relied on, and could delay the phase out needed to protect human rights and the environment. The report will be influential to talks at the COP28 climate summit in Dubai between 30 November-12 December. Amnesty International


November 2, 2023 (JUBA) –  South Sudan and the Central African Republic (CAR)  have agreed to implement a cooperation pact which permits control and monitoring of illegal activities along their common border points.

The CAR president, Faustin-Archange Toudera witnessed the signing of the agreement in the country’s capital, Bangui on Wednesday. 

South Sudan’s deputy Interior minister, Marial Gumke represented President Salva Kiir during discussions that preceded the signing of the pact at the high-level security event.

If implemented, the security pact will enhance security cooperation and is earmarked to strengthen the promotion of economic, social and political relations in joint border areas.  

The conference that culminated into the signing of the pact follows a visit by CAR’s president for a meeting with his South Sudan counterpart, Salva Kiir in September.

The two leaders, during a meeting held in South Sudan’s capital, Juba signed a deal to strengthen border security cooperation to facilitate trade and free movement of people.

The heads of states also agreed to deploy a joint security force to control and monitor the illegal activities of negative forces. The leadership of the two countries further announced their intention to expand the deployment of the joint force to include illegal border crossing for illegal military activities on either side of the border of each country.

Gumke, in a statement issued on Wednesday, said he was honoured to represent his country following the invitation to participate in the high-level regional security meeting. 

“I was honored to lead a government delegation to the Central African Republic upon invitation by the Central African government for South Sudan to partake in the Regional meeting for the official launch of the “Support Platform for the Solution for Forcibly Displaced Persons Related to Central African Republic Crisis,” he explained.

The two-day meeting, which commenced with the Regional Technical Committee (RTC), also discussed in detail the Yaoundé Declaration (2022) as well as its core principles. 

The declaration demands countries in the region to show responsibility towards finding a collective solution for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and refugees. It also forms the basis for the final validation of the Tripartite Agreement which South Sudan and other neighbouring countries signed. 

The signing ceremony was witnessed by delegates from neighboring countries, international peace actors, financial institutions and the international community. - Sudan Tribune



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