(Sept. 25, 2009) On September 17, 2009, President Alan García Pérez of Peru promulgated Law No. 29408, declaring tourism to be of national interest and a priority policy of the state for the development of the country.
The objective of the Law is to promote, encourage, and regulate the sustainable development of tourism activities. The Law applies to all three levels of government, national, regional, and local, in coordination with the different actors involved in the sector. Tourism activities are to be based upon the principles of sustainable development, inclusion, non-discrimination, promotion of private investment, decentralization, quality, fair competition and commerce, promotion of a pro-tourism culture among the populace, promotion of national identity, and conservation.
The Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism will approve and update the Plan Estrategico Nacional de Turismo (Strategic National Tourism Plan) and coordinate and direct the regional and local governments in matters of tourism. The Ministry will promote the development of tourism and the implementation of strategies to facilitate tourism, investment, and promotion of domestic tourism. The Law defines the functions of the Ministry and of the regional and local governments. The Comite Consultivo de Turismo (Tourism Advisory Committee), is an agency devoted to coordination of the government with the private sector for tourism-related matters that fall within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism.
Other topics covered by the Law are: planning of tourism; tourism resources; promotion of investment in tourism; priority zones of tourism development; providers of tourism services; protection of tourists; tourism promotion; tourist behavior and prevention of the commercial sexual exploitation of children and adolescents in connection with tourism; social tourism (i.e., tools and means to facilitate participation in tourism by a population with limited resources); and human resources related to tourist activities.
This law amends articles 30 of Law No. 26834, on protected natural areas; and article 181-A of the Criminal Code, concerning penalties for commercial sexual exploitation of children and adolescents in connection with tourism. (Ley No. 29408, EL PERUANO [Official Gazette], Sept. 18, 2009, available at http://www.congreso.gob.pe/ntley/Imagenes/Leyes/29408.pdf.)