Tourism Out­pac­ing Global Econ­omy

Tourism sup­ports 1 in 10 jobs, and is out­pac­ing the global econ­omy for the 6th con­sec­u­tive year.

Tourism Tattler - - EDITORIAL - By An­nebeth Wi­jten­burg.

Travel & Tourism gen­er­ated 1 in 10 of the world’s jobs in 2016 as the sec­tor grew by 3.3%, out­pac­ing the global econ­omy for the sixth year in a row, reads a new re­port by the World Travel & Tourism Coun­cil (WTTC).

WTTC’s Eco­nomic Im­pact Re­port 2017, which is con­ducted in con­junc­tion with Ox­ford Eco­nom­ics, re­searches the eco­nomic im­pact of Travel & Tourism im­pact on global level, for 25 re­gions, and 185 coun­tries.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­search, Travel & Tourism grew by 3.3% in 2016, gen­er­at­ing US$7.6 tril­lion world­wide, which is 10.2% of global GDP when the di­rect, in­di­rect and in­duced im­pacts are taken into ac­count. The sec­tor sup­ported a to­tal of 292 mil­lion jobs in 2016, which is 1 in 10 of all jobs in the world

Ad­di­tion­ally, global vis­i­tor ex­ports, which is money spent by for­eign vis­i­tors, ac­counted for 6.6% of to­tal world ex­ports, and al­most 30% of to­tal world ser­vices ex­ports.

David Scowsill, Pres­i­dent & CEO, WTTC, said: “This is the sixth year in a row that Travel & Tourism has out­paced the global econ­omy, show­ing the sec­tor’s re­silience, and the ea­ger­ness of peo­ple to con­tinue to travel and dis­cover new places, de­spite eco­nomic and politi­cal chal­lenges across the world. The con­tin­u­ous growth of our sec­tor un­der­lines the sig­nif­i­cance of busi­ness and leisure travel in driv­ing eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment and job cre­ation through­out the world.”

South­east Asia (8.3%) was the re­gion with the fastest grow­ing Travel & Tourism sec­tor in 2016, driven by the ex­pand­ing Chi­nese out­bound mar­ket and the coun­tries own grow­ing mar­kets. Latin America (0.2%) was the slow­est grow­ing re­gion. Some coun­tries per­formed well above the world av­er­age, but the Brazil­ian econ­omy dragged down the whole re­gion.

The other re­gions regis­tered the fol­low­ing growth: South Asia (7.9%), North East Asia (4.6%), Ocea­nia (4.4%), the Caribbean (3.2%), North America (3.1%), the Mid­dle East (2.7%), Sub-Sa­ha­ran Africa (2.4%) and Europe (1.6%).

Travel & Tourism is ex­pected to grow by 3.8% in 2017, gen­er­at­ing US$ 7.9 tril­lion. This growth is slower than pre­vi­ously fore­cast, as a re­sult of a down­grade to the global econ­omy and a damp­en­ing of con­sumer spend­ing.

Over the next decade the sec­tor is fore­cast to grow at an av­er­age of 3.9% per year. By 2027 it will gen­er­ate more than 11% of the world’s GDP and em­ploy a to­tal of 380 mil­lion peo­ple. One quar­ter of all jobs cre­ated in the next decade will be sup­ported by Travel & Tourism.

Scowsill con­tin­ued “The fu­ture prospects for Travel & Tourism are good, but the sec­tor con­tin­ues to face chal­lenges. The im­pact of ter­ror­ism and the rise of pop­ulism pose a se­vere risk to the abil­ity of peo­ple to travel ef­fi­ciently and se­curely.

The sec­tor it­self needs ur­gently to ad­dress the im­pact of growth on des­ti­na­tions and its own con­tri­bu­tion to cli­mate change if it is to be sus­tain­able in the long term.

The UN’s 2017 In­ter­na­tional Year of Sus­tain­able Tourism for De­vel­op­ment is a per­fect op­por­tu­nity to ex­plore so­lu­tions to­gether.

We look for­ward to wel­com­ing del­e­gates at our up­com­ing WTTC Global Sum­mit in Bangkok, Thai­land, 26-27 April where these chal­lenges will be ad­dressed.”

About the au­thor: An­nebeth Wi­jten­burg is the Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Man­ager at World Travel & Tourism Coun­cil (WTTC). www.wttc.org

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