PHOTO: A front desk attendant at a hotel. (photo via Flickr/Alan Light)
In a recent report by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), travel and tourism accounted for one out of every 10 of the world’s jobs in 2016, an increase of 3.3 percent from the previous year.
The improvement also marks the sixth consecutive year the travel and tourism industry outpaced the global economy.
According to the WTTC’s Economic Impact Report 2017, the travel and tourism industry generated $7.6 trillion worldwide, an astounding 10.3 percent of the global gross domestic product when the direct, indirect and induced impacts are taken into account.
In addition, the travel and tourism industry accounted for 292 million jobs in 2016, and global visitor exports accounted for almost 30 percent of total world services exports and 6.6 percent of total world exports.
“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,” WTTC CEO David Scowsill said in a statement. “The continuous growth of our sector underlines the significance of business and leisure travel in driving economic development and job creation throughout the world.”
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In terms of regions growing the fastest, Southeast Asia’s travel and tourism industry grew by 8.3 percent, followed by South Asia (7.9 percent), North East Asia (4.6 percent), Oceania (4.4 percent), the Caribbean (3.2 percent), North America (3.1 percent), the Middle East (2.7 percent), Sub-Saharan Africa (2.4 percent), Europe (1.6 percent) and Latin America (0.2 percent).
As for the future, the WTTC report suggests the travel and tourism industry is expected to grow by 3.8 percent in 2017 and generate $7.9 trillion, a drop from the previous industry forecast. The report also expects the industry to grow at an average of 3.9 percent per year.
By 2027, the WTTC expects more than 11 percent of the world’s GDP to be associated with the travel and tourism industry. The report also says the industry will employ a total of 380 million people within a decade.