Tourism prospects

The Pak Banker - - FRONT PAGE -

Ac­cord­ing to the Travel and Tourism Com­pet­i­tive­ness In­dex 2017, Pak­istan has in­creased its rank­ing by one point - cur­rently at 124 out of 136 coun­tries. In 2016, Pak­istan wit­nessed less than a mil­lion in­ter­na­tional tourists, with an av­er­age re­ceipt per ar­rival es­ti­mated at $328.3. The to­tal re­ceipts from in­ter­na­tional tourism amounted to $317 mil­lion. The travel and tourism in­dus­try in Pak­istan has a share of 2.8 per­cent of GDP and is worth $7.362 bil­lion. It em­ploys slight less than 1.5 mil­lion peo­ple which make up 2.4 per­cent of to­tal em­ploy­ment. The ba­sic rea­son for the worst rank­ing for Pak­istan given the re­port is visa re­quire­ments in which its rank­ing is 135 out of 136 coun­tries. It may be pointed that the Pak­istan pass­port has also been voted as one of the worst in the world.

The govern­ment's pri­ori­ti­sa­tion of travel and tourism in­dus­try was ranked at 132 among the 136 coun­tries, char­ac­terised by low govern­ment ex­pen­di­ture, in­ef­fec­tive mar­ket­ing and brand­ing and lack of com­pre­hen­sive travel and tourism data.

The re­port has been pub­lished un­der the theme "Paving the Way for a More Sus­tain­able and In­clu­sive Fu­ture," and pro­vides a plat­form for di­a­logue at the coun­try level to for­mu­late ap­pro­pri­ate poli­cies and ac­tions. The re­port ranks 136 coun­tries across 14 sep­a­rate di­men­sions, re­veal­ing how well coun­tries could de­liver sus­tain­able eco­nomic and so­ci­etal ben­e­fits through their travel and tourism sec­tor. It high­lights that the travel and tourism in­dus­try con­tin­ues to drive growth, cre­ate jobs, re­duce poverty and foster de­vel­op­ment and tol­er­ance af­fect­ing lives of mil­lions of peo­ple, and is a force for good in a largely stag­nant global econ­omy.

Pak­istan has 36 World Her­itage cul­tural sites, which showed a de­cent rank­ing at 59 among cul­tural re­sources and busi­ness travel. This is also en­hanced by in­creased dig­i­tal de­mand for cul­tural and entertainment tourism. The best rank­ing for Pak­istan was in the price ef­fec­tive­ness cat­e­gory where it ranked an im­pres­sive 29. The re­port states that Pak­istan has lower ho­tel and fuel prices, and higher pur­chas­ing power par­ity. Spain, France and Ger­many con­tinue to top the travel and tourism rank­ings, but Asia steals the show as the re­gion's largest economies show the great­est rise in tourism-friend­li­ness. The top 10 in­clude tra­di­tional strong travel and tourism des­ti­na­tions, such as Ja­pan (fourth), the United King­dom (fifth), the United States (sixth, down two places), Aus­tralia (sev­enth), Italy (eighth), Canada (ninth) and Switzer­land (tenth).

Fur­ther­more, 12 of the top 15 most im­proved coun­tries are emerg­ing mar­kets. Asia's largest mar­kets are not only be­com­ing larger source mar­kets but also more at­trac­tive des­ti­na­tions. Ac­cord­ing to the World Eco­nomic Fo­rum, "The rise of Asia's gi­ants shows that the Asian Tourism Cen­tury is be­com­ing a re­al­ity. To reach their po­ten­tial, the ma­jor­ity of coun­tries still have more to do, from en­hanc­ing se­cu­rity, pro­mot­ing their cul­tural her­itage, build­ing their in­fras­truc­ture and cre­at­ing stronger visa poli­cies." The re­port finds that the in­creas­ingly pro­tec­tion­ist global con­text, which hin­ders global trade, is not hold­ing back in­ter­na­tional travel, but re­silience is clear as the in­dus­try con­tin­ues to build bridges be­tween peo­ple and stronger visa poli­cies are be­ing de­vel­oped to en­hance se­cu­rity while fa­cil­i­tat­ing travel. The in­creas­ing im­por­tance of de­mand from emerg­ing mar­kets and tech­nol­ogy are chang­ing the travel and tourism sec­tor's land­scape at a fast rate," said econ­o­mist Roberto Crotti.

The num­ber of in­ter­na­tional tourist reached 1.2 bil­lion in 2016 and is ex­pected to con­tinue in­creas­ing in the com­ing decade. The global travel and tourism sec­tor ac­counts for 10 per­cent of global GDP, grows faster than other sec­tors and pro­vides one in 10 jobs. The in­dus­try con­trib­uted $7.6 tril­lion to the global econ­omy, and gen­er­ated 292 mil­lion jobs in 2016. The sec­tor is also mak­ing large strides to­ward a larger fo­cus on en­vi­ron­men­tal sus­tain­abil­ity, and the rev­enue gen­er­ated is an im­por­tant in­cen­tive and a source of fund­ing to pro­tect the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Pakistan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.