The tourism sector has created over 107 million jobs worldwide, the equivalent of 3.6% of total employment representing 3% of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP), data released this week by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) shows.
These significant figures are a tangible proof that the sector is a major engine for job creation and a driving force for economic growth and development, the International Trade Organisation (ILO) said on Tuesday.
Unfortunately in Africa, many governments seem to have forsaken the tourism sector, focusing instead all their energy and resources on commodities, a ‘dumb’ strategy that has now backfired.
As the world celebrated World Tourism Day on Tuesday (September 27), ILO called on governments to make sure that the growth and development of this sector was sustainable, socially responsible and created decent work opportunities.
Tourism contributes about 8% to South Africa’s GDP.
ILO said South Africa, China, India, Indonesia and Mexico would be tamong the fastest growing tourism and travel destinations in 2016. Among the non-G20 economies, Tanzania, Vietnam and Zambia Kyrgyzstan and Myanmar are also expected to show the strongest growth.