WTTC has produced its first study that looks at the economic and employment impact of travel and tourism on cities, and found that the top 10 fastest growing cities are all in Asia.
The research looks at 65 global cities, chosen for being tops for arrivals and visitor spend, of which 21 are in Asia-Pacific.
Rising prosperity across the region is fuelling increased travel demand, and investment in transport and hotel infrastructure, the report indicated. As well, government policies that facilitate the ease of borders crossings have helped to boost travel and tourism connectivity across the region.
Notably, the study revealed that the world’s top 10 fastest growing cities are in Asia, and projected that the region’s cities will continue to be at the forefront of tourism growth over the next decade.
Chinese cities took the top five spots, with Chongqing in pole position with a 14 per cent growth per year. It is followed by Guangzhou (13.1 per cent), Shanghai (12.8 per cent), Beijing (12 per cent) and Chengdu (11.2 per cent).
The remaining cities are Manila (10.9 per cent), Delhi (10.8 per cent), Shenzhen (10.7 per cent), Kuala Lumpur (10.1 per cent) and Jakarta (10 per cent).
In general, Asia-Pacific records almost six per cent of annual growth – 50 per cent more than the world average of four per cent.
Gloria Guevara, president & CEO, WTTC, said: “The power of Asian cities when it comes to driving the travel and tourism sector is clear to see in this new data.
“With this level of forecast growth, the importance of investment in long-term planning, infrastructure and sustainable public policies cannot be underestimated. It is vital that city authorities understand the economic impact of travel and tourism, GDP and employment contribution, and not just visitor arrivals, as they seek to develop new products and opportunities to increase traveller spend and sustainable growth.”
Other highlights from the report include the doubling of Singapore’s travel and tourism contribution in the past 10 years to US$12.4 billion in 2016 and supporting 164,000 jobs; and Macau coming up as the most tourism intensive city in Asia-Pacific with 27 per cent of the economy a direct result of tourism spend.
- reporting live from ITB Asia