Turkey climbs in WEF tourism development index
Turkey moved up four places in the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Travel and Tourism Development Index to rank 45th out of 117 countries in 2021.
Turkey’s score also increased by 1.3% in 2021 compared to 2019 to reach 4.2. Overall scores range from 1 to 7, with 1 being the worst and 7 being the best.
The country’s tourism industry expects to welcome more international holidaymakers this year as most countries have eased travel restrictions, which were introduced amid the coronavirus pandemic, and the COVID situation has improved. in Turkey.
Foreign tourist arrivals in Turkey have already soared 173% to 7.5 million people in January-April compared to a year ago.
In April alone, nearly 2.6 million foreign tourists visited the country, marking a staggering increase of 226% over the same month last year.
Earlier this month, Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy reaffirmed that Turkey aims to welcome 42 million foreign tourists and generate $35 billion in tourism revenue this year, up from 24.5 billion dollars in revenue and 30 million tourist arrivals in 2021.
The picture was very different two years later, as COVID-19 lockdowns hit the travel and tourism (T&T) sector hard. In 2020 alone, it suffered $4.5 trillion in losses and 62 million jobs, impacting the standard of living and well-being of communities around the world, said the WEF.
“The war in Ukraine has added to the instability and economic disruption of the sector. Against this backdrop, the first WEF Travel and Tourism (T&T) Development Index reflects the growing role of sustainability and resilience in the growth of T&T, as well as the role of the sector in broader economic and social development. .
The T&T sector is a major driver of economic development, global connectivity and the livelihoods of some of the most vulnerable and hardest hit populations and businesses in the pandemic, he said, adding that by Therefore, supporting the development and recovery of T&T, which will contribute to the global recovery, build resilience and support all who depend on the sector for their work, will be essential.
“The T&T sector has faced challenging operating conditions, but changing demand dynamics have created opportunities and a need to adapt: in the shorter term, challenges such as reduced capacity, geopolitical tensions and labor shortages are slowing the recovery.”
Japan tops the WEF list, followed by the United States and Spain. France and Germany placed fourth and fifth.
Meanwhile, Japan announced on May 26 that it will reopen to tourists from 98 countries and regions from June 10, ending a two-year pandemic shutdown, but travelers will only be allowed with groups of tourists.
Foreign tourist arrivals to Japan fell more than 90% in 2020, from a record 31.9 million the previous year, nearly wiping out the pre-pandemic inbound tourism market of more than 4 trillion yen (31 billions of dollars).