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Tourism supports one in 10 jobs, outpacing global economy for sixth consecutive year

Tourism supports one in 10 jobs, outpacing global economy for sixth consecutive year
March 21, 2017

Global tourism generated one 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, according to 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 tourism's economic impact on a global level, for 25 regions, and 185 countries.

According to the research, the industry 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 one 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.

Commenting on the findings, WTTC President and Cheif Executive David Scowsill stated “this is the sixth year in a row that travel and 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.”

South East Asia (8.3%) was the region with the fastest growing 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%).

WTTC predicts that 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 and 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 tourism.

Scowsill added “the future prospects for travel and 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.”

The WTTC is staging its annual Global Summit in Bangkok, Thailand, one 26th and 27th April at which many of these challenges will be addressed. The WTTC Global Summit will also see the presentation on the 2017 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards.

Click here to view the WTTC’s Economic Impact Report 2017.

For more information on the 2017 WTTC Global Summit, click here for event details in the Australasian Leisure Management industry Calendar.

Top image: Staff at New Zealand's The Remarkable ski field.

19th January 2017 - WTTC ANNOUNCES FINALISTS FOR 2017 TOURISM FOR TOMORROW AWARDS

15th November 2016 - INVESTMENTS IN CHINA’S THEME PARKS DRIVING ASIAN TOURISM 

8th November 2016 - ALMOST A BILLION GLOBAL TOURISTS ON THE MOVE IN THE FIRST NINE MONTHS OF 2016

10th September 2016 - UNITED NATIONS DECLARES 2017 AS THE INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF SUSTAINABLE TOURISM FOR DEVELOPMENT 

1st September 2016 - WTTC CHALLENGES TOURISM BUSINESSES TO SHOW HOW SUSTAINABLE THEY ARE 

23rd March 2016 - GLOBAL TOURISM INDUSTRY ADDED 7.2 MILLION NEW JOBS IN 2015

24th February 2016 - NEW BOARD WORKING TOWARDS SUSTAINABLE FUTURE FOR ALPINE RESORTS

5th June 2015 - ASIAN MARKET DRIVES EXPANDING GLOBAL THEME PARK ATTENDANCES


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