Global tourist numbers increased 4 percentStaff Writer | November 9, 2016
The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) said that 956 million people took international trips from January to September 2016, a 4% increase over January to September 2015, according to the World Tourism Barometer report.
Tourism Asia and the Pacific were the fastest-growing destinations
“Tourism is one of the most resilient and fastest-growing economic sectors but it is also very sensitive to risks,” said UNWTO secretary general Taleb Rifai in a press release.
Those risks, he went on, are both actual and perceived. “No destination is immune to risks. We need to increase cooperation in addressing these global threats, namely those related to safety and security,” he said. Although most destinations are posting good numbers, some still struggle with “negative events.”
Asia and the Pacific were the fastest-growing destinations, with a 9% increase.
International traveller numbers were up 8% in Sub-Saharan Africa, 4% in the Americas, topped by South America with 7%, Central America with 6% and North America with 4%; and arrivals grew by 2% in Europe.
Chinese international travellers topped the ranking of the world’s ten biggest tourist sources expenditure-wise, with a 19% increase, followed by the United Kingdom at 10%, the United States, Australia and South Korea at 9% each, Germany at 5%, and France and Italy at 3% each.
Canadian tourists spent 2% less and spending by Russian tourists slid 37%. ■