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Impact of tourism on GDP is direct and overwhelming

Impact of tourism on GDP is direct and overwhelming

The World Tourism Day (September 27) celebrates the immense economic and cultural contributions that the tourism industry makes to countries and communities around the world. Tourism is a major driver of economic growth, generating income and employment opportunities in various other sectors like hospitality, transportation and local businesses. Moreover, the day encourages responsible and sustainable tourism practices. As the sector continues to grow, there is a pressing need to mitigate its negative impacts on the environment, culture, and society. The World Tourism Day serves as a platform for governments, organizations, and individuals to discuss and implement strategies for responsible tourism, such as reducing carbon emissions, protecting natural ecosystems, and respecting local customs and traditions. It promotes the idea that tourism should be a force for good, benefiting both travellers and the destinations they visit. The WTTC expects 2024 to exceed 2019, and for travel and tourism to be a growth sector over the next ten years.

The WTTC is forecasting that the travel and tourism sector will grow its GDP contribution to $15.5 trn by 2033, representing 11.6% of the global economy. By this point it will employ 430 million people around the world, with almost 12% of the working population employed in the sector. The WTTC forecasts that by the end of 2023, nearly half of the 185 countries in the report will have either fully recovered to pre-pandemic levels or be within 95% of full recovery. The tourism sector is projected to contribute $250 bn to the country’s GDP by 2030, generating an employment for 137 Mn individuals, and accrueing $56 Bn in foreign exchange earnings (FEE). The Indian tourism sector ranks among the fastest-growing economic sectors in the country. The industry significantly impacts employment and drives regional development, while also creating a multiplier effect on the performance of related industries. By 2028, India's tourism and hospitality industry is projected to generate $50.9 bn in visitor exports, a significant increase from $28.9 bn in 2018. Additionally, Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) are anticipated to reach 30.5 mn by 2028.

In light of the G20 Presidency and the India@75 Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav celebrations, the Ministry of Tourism has designated 2023 as the 'Visit India Year' to promote inbound travel. Embracing a progressive outlook, India welcomes 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the tourism industry under the automatic route. Additionally, 100% FDI is permitted for tourism construction projects, including the development of exquisite hotels, resorts, and unparalleled recreational facilities. Approximately, 50 destinations will be selected through challenge mode to be developed as a whole package for domestic and international tourism. Sector-specific skilling and entrepreneurship development have to be dovetailed to achieve the objectives of the ‘Dekho Apna Desh’ initiative. Tourism infrastructure and amenities are to be facilitated in border villages through the ‘Vibrant Villages’ programme while unity malls will be set up in state capitals or prominent tourist centres.

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