Middle East & North Africa Tourism Consolidates Recovery
International tourism in the Middle East and North Africa showed clear signs of recovery in 2017 with growths of 5% and 13%, respectively.
International tourist arrivals grew by a remarkable 7% in 2017 to reach a total of 1,322 million, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. This strong momentum is expected to continue in 2018 at a rate of 4%-5%.
Destinations around the world welcomed 1.1 billion international tourists between January and October 2017, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. This represents a 7% increase on the same period of last year, or 70 million more international arrivals. Strong demand for international tourism across world regions reflects the global economic upswing.
Demand for international tourism remained strong during the Northern Hemisphere summer peak season. International tourist arrivals in July and August totalled over 300 million for the first time ever according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. Many destinations reported double-digit growth, in particular in the Mediterranean.
Destinations worldwide welcomed 598 million international tourists in the first six months of 2017, some 36 million more than in the same period of 2016. At 6%, growth was well above the trend of recent years, making the current January-June period the strongest half-year since 2010.
According to the 2nd UNWTO Report on Gastronomy Tourism, this tourism segment 'offers enormous potential in stimulating local, regional and national economies and enhancing sustainability and inclusion'.
The UNWTO 2nd Global Report on LGBT Tourism was launched at the Annual Convention of the International Gay, Lesbian and Transgender Association (IGLTA) taking place on 4-6 May in Florida. The report, developed in cooperation with IGLTA, underlines the potential of this segment and how to effectively maximize its value.
2016 results on expenditure from major outbound markets reflect increasing demand for international tourism across the world, as reported in the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. With a 12% increase in spending, China continued to lead international outbound tourism, followed by the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and France as top five spenders.