Why tourism?

Tourism – an economic and social phenomenon

Over the decades, tourism has experienced continued growth and deepening ‎diversification to become one of the fastest growing economic sectors in the world. ‎Modern tourism is closely linked to development and encompasses a growing number ‎of new destinations. These dynamics have turned tourism into a key driver for socio-‎economic progress.‎

Today, the business volume of tourism equals or even surpasses that of oil exports, ‎food products or automobiles. Tourism has become one of the major players in ‎international commerce, and represents at the same time one of the main income ‎sources for many developing countries. This growth goes hand in hand with an ‎increasing diversification and competition among destinations.‎

This global spread of tourism in industrialised and developed states has produced ‎economic and employment benefits in many related sectors - from construction to ‎agriculture or telecommunications.‎
The contribution of tourism to economic well-being depends on the quality and the ‎revenues of the tourism offer. UNWTO assists destinations in their sustainable ‎positioning in ever more complex national and international markets. As the UN agency ‎dedicated to tourism, UNWTO points out that particularly developing countries stand to ‎benefit from sustainable tourism and acts to help make this a reality.‎

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Current developments and forecasts

  • International tourist arrivals grew by 7 % in 2017 to 1,323 million
  • In 2017, international tourism generated US$ 1.6 trillion in export earnings
  • UNWTO forecasts a growth in international tourist arrivals of between 4% and 5% in 2018
  • By 2030, UNWTO forecasts international tourist arrivals to reach 1.8 billion (UNWTO Tourism Towards 2030)

  • UNWTO Tourism Highlights presents a concise overview of international tourism in the world based on the results for the year 2017. The booklet includes:
  • Key trends in international tourism in 2017
  • Results by (sub)region and country of destination
  • World’s top tourism destinations
  • Outbound tourism by region and top spenders

 

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For more information on Facts & Figures please visit: http://mkt.unwto.org/