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Record 62 million international tourists visit African countries in 2017

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Dubrovnik, Croatia

As global tourism records its highest arrivals in seven years in 2017, African countries maintained the rebound of 2016 and reached a record 62 million international arrivals.

According to the results released Monday January 15, 2018 by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and copied to ghanabusinessnews.com, based on data reported by destinations around the world, it is estimated that international tourist arrivals (overnight visitors) worldwide increased 7 per cent in 2017.

“This is well above the sustained and consistent trend of 4 per cent or higher growth since 2010 and represents the strongest results in seven years,” it said.

And based on available data for Africa, growth in 2017 is estimated at 8 per cent.

“The region consolidated its 2016 rebound and reached a record 62 million international arrivals. North Africa enjoyed a strong recovery with arrivals growing by 13 per cent, while in sub-Saharan Africa arrivals increased by 5 per cent,” it noted.

The UNWTO indicated that led by Mediterranean destinations, Europe recorded extraordinary results for such a large and rather mature region, with 8 per cent more international arrivals than in 2016, adding that  Africa consolidated its 2016 rebound with an 8 per cent increase. Asia and the Pacific recorded 6 per cent growth, the Middle East 5 per cent and the Americas 3 per cent.

“International travel continues to grow strongly, consolidating the tourism sector as a key driver in economic development. As the third export sector in the world, tourism is essential for job creation and the prosperity of communities around the world. Yet as we continue to grow we must work closer together to ensure this growth benefits every member of every host community, and is in line with the Sustainable Development Goals,” UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili was quoted as saying.

For 2018, the UNWTO projects that the current strong momentum is expected to continue, though at a more sustainable pace after eight years of steady expansion following the 2009 economic and financial crisis.

“Based on current trends, economic prospects and the outlook by the UNWTO Panel of Experts, UNWTO projects international tourist arrivals worldwide to grow at a rate of 4 per cent-5 per cent in 2018. This is somewhat above the 3.8 per cent average increase projected for the period 2010-2020 by UNWTO in its Tourism Towards 2030 long-term forecast. Europe and the Americas are both expected to grow by 3.5 per cent-4.5 per cent, Asia and the Pacific by 5 per cent-6 per cent, Africa by 5 per cent-7 per cent and the Middle East by 4 per cent-6 per cent,” it added.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi
Copyright ©2018 by Creative Imaginations Publicity
All rights reserved. This news item or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher except for the use of brief quotations in reviews.

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