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Global tourism industry added 7.2 million new jobs in 2015
New research from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) shows that the tourism industry added 7.2 million jobs to the global economy and contributed over US$ 7.2 trillion in GDP.
The WTTC’s annual Economic Impact Report 2016, the Council’s annual research study, provides economic data on the contribution of the tourism industry on a global level as well as for 184 countries and 24 regions.
Introducing the findings, WTTC President and Chief Executive David Scowsill stated “despite uncertainty in the global economy and specific challenges to travel and tourism last year, the sector grew by 3.7%, contributing a total of 9.8% to the global GDP.
“Travel and tourism also supported a total of 284 million jobs in 2015, an increase of 7.2 million, which means it now supports, directly and indirectly, 1 in 11 jobs on the planet.”
Highlighting the strength of the industry, Scowsill added “travel and tourism once again has proved its resilient nature. Terror attacks, disease outbreaks, currency fluctuations and geopolitical challenges have impacted the sector at a country or regional level, but travel and tourism at the global level continues to produce another robust performance.”
Tourism’s direct contribution to GDP growth outpaced overall GDP country growth in 127 of the 184 countries covered by the research.
Countries where tourism most markedly outperformed the wider economy in 2015 include Iceland, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and Uganda.
The growth of the sector is stimulated by a worldwide increase in middle-class income households, an ageing population, which tends to travel more, and growing connectivity between destinations, making travel more accessible and affordable.
All regions of the world showed growth in total tourism contribution to GDP in 2015. South East Asia was the fastest growing region with growth of 7.9% followed by South Asia, which grew 7.4%. Middle East grew 5.9%, Caribbean 5.1%, Sub-Saharan Africa 3.3%, North America 3.1%, Europe 2.5%, Northeast Asia 2.1%, Latin America 1.5% and North Africa 1.4%.
Outlook for 2016 and beyond
In 2016, Travel & Tourism’s total contribution to GDP is forecast to grow by 3.5%, and is again expected to outpace global economic growth for the sixth consecutive year.
Security concerns, border policies, oil prices, the strength of the US dollar relative to other currencies, and other macroeconomic developments will continue to influence travel trends in 2016 and beyond. Nevertheless, over the next decade the WTTC expects tourism to continue to outpace the world economy, growing by 4% on average annually.
The performance of the global tourism industry, along with a range of other issues including industry security, collaborative economies, oil price and exchange rate impacts and the balance between technology and human interaction will be considered at the 16th WTTC Annual Global Summit, taking place in Dallas, Texas, USA on 6th and 7th April 2016.
For more information on the Summit go to www.wttc.org/summits/the-global-summit-2016
Images: Staff at Dreamworld on the Gold Coast (top) and David Scowsill (below).
22nd January 2016 - 2015 INTERNATIONAL TOURIST ARRIVALS RISE 4% TO A RECORD 1.2 BILLION
21st January 2016 - WTTC TOURISM FOR TOMORROW AWARDS ANNOUNCES 2016 FINALISTS
18th May 2015 - NEW ZEALAND’S TOURISM WORKFORCE SET TO GROW ALMOST 40%
10th March 2015 - 14 MILLION JOBS AT RISK DUE TO GLOBAL TOURISM TALENT SHORTAGE
21st December 2013 - ARABIAN GULF NATIONS WANT MORE TOURISM WORK FOR NATIONALS
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