UN Tourism, WTTC recognise Saudi Arabia’s achievement of over 100 million tourists

Saudi Arabia has received international recognition and applause from UN Tourism and the WTTC for welcoming over 100 million tourists in 2023, surpassing its previous target set for 2030.

Having achieved this milestone seven years ahead of the initial goal, the Ministry of Tourism has announced that the Kingdom has now set a new ambitious target of welcoming 150 million tourists by 2030.

Saudi Arabia has set a new target of 150 million tourists by 2030 after surpassing its previous target last year; Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, pictured

Tourism has proven to be a significant contributor to the nation’s economy, with domestic and international tourists spending over 250 billion riyals (US$66.6 billion) in 2023. This expenditure represents over four per cent of GDP and seven per cent of the non-oil GDP reflecting the crucial role of tourism in diversifying Saudi Arabia’s economy.

The tourism sector in the Kingdom has marked significant qualitative leaps, with the total number of tourists, both domestic and international, reaching 106.2 million in 2023. This represents an increase of 56 per cent compared to 2019 and a substantial 12 per cent surge compared to 2022. Among these, the number of international tourists reached 27.4 million, showing a substantial 56 per cent increase from 2019 and a 65 per cent rise compared to 2022.

Minister Ahmed Al Khateeb commented: “Tourism is a key pillar in the nation’s economic transformation under Vision 2030, creating jobs and revenue for the Kingdom. The tourism ecosystem continues to operate in line with the national tourism strategy by developing diverse tourist destinations. Our aim is to enrich the experiences of tourists, diversify options for both local and international visitors, and enhance hospitality facilities along with other services provided.”

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