Montag, 18.02.2019 05:37 Uhr

International Tourist Arrivals according to UNWTO

Verantwortlicher Autor: Carlo Marino Rome/Madrid, 22.01.2019, 11:18 Uhr
Nachricht/Bericht: +++ Reise & Tourismus +++ Bericht 4210x gelesen

Rome/Madrid [ENA] According to a recent press release by the UNWTO (United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism), 2018 totalled 1.4 billion international tourist arrivals (+6%), consolidating 2017 strong results and proving to be the second strongest year since 2010. In relative terms, the Middle East (+10%) and Africa (+7%) grew above the world average while Asia

and the Pacific and Europe grew at 6%. For 2019, UNWTO forecasts a 3-4% increase, in line with the historical growth trend. UNWTO estimates that worldwide international tourist arrivals (overnight visitors) increased 6% to 1.4 billion in 2018, clearly above the 3.7% growth registered in the global economy. The growth of tourism in recent years proves that the sector is today one of the most powerful drivers of economic growth and development. It is crucial to manage it in a sustainable manner and translate this expansion into real benefits for all countries, and particularly, to all local communities, creating opportunities for jobs and entrepreneurship and leaving no one behind. “This is why UNWTO is focussing 2019 on education, skills

and job creation”, said UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili. UNWTO data by region show that international tourist arrivals in Europe reached 713 million in 2018, a notable 6% increase over an exceptionally strong 2017. Growth was driven by Southern and Mediterranean Europe (+7%), Central and Eastern Europe (+6%) and Western Europe (+6%). Results in Northern Europe were flat due to the weakness of arrivals to the United Kingdom. Asia and the Pacific (+6%) recorded 343 million international tourist arrivals in 2018. Arrivals in South-East Asia grew 7%, followed by North-East Asia (+6%) and South Asia (+5%). Oceania showed more modest growth at +3%.

The Americas (+3%) welcomed 217 million international arrivals in 2018, with mixed results across destinations. Growth was led by North America (+4%), and followed by South America (+3%), while Central America and the Caribbean (both -2%) reached very mixed results, the latter reflecting the impact of the September 2017 hurricanes Irma and Maria. Data from Africa points to a 7% increase in 2018 (North Africa at +10% and Sub-Saharan +6%), reaching an estimated 67 million arrivals. The Middle East (+10%) showed solid results last year consolidating its 2017 recovery, with international tourist arrivals reaching 64 million.

The global economic slowdown, the uncertainty related to the Brexit, as well as geopolitical and trade tensions may prompt a “wait and see” attitude among investors and travellers. Overall, 2019 is expected to see the consolidation among consumers of emerging trends such as the quest for ‘travel to change and to show’, ‘the pursuit of healthy options’ such as walking, wellness and sports tourism, ‘multigenerational travel’ as a result of demographic changes and more responsible travel. Digitalization, new business models, more affordable travel and societal changes are expected to continue shaping the sector, so both destination and companies need to adapt if they want to remain competitive.

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