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Travel and tourism can be major growth sector for UK after Brexit

Staff Writer | March 8, 2019
Travel & Tourism can be a major growth sector for the UK after Brexit, according to new research from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).
Britain   The total size of the UK Travel & Tourism economy grew 1% to £234 billion
The research shows that, although the United Kingdom Travel & Tourism sector remains the fifth largest in the world, its 2018 growth rate of 1% was significantly below the world average of 3.9%.

The total size of the UK Travel & Tourism economy grew 1% to £234 billion in 2018, which makes the UK the fifth-largest Travel & Tourism economy in the world economic contribution behind the United States (£1,200,436 billion), China (£1,135,885 billion), Japan (£276,705 billion) and Germany (£259,497 billion); but ahead of Italy (£206,895 billion), France (£199.997 billion), and Spain (£158,789 billion).

The 1% rate of growth was below the global average of 3.9% and the European Union average of 2.7%.

Particularly strong growth was recorded in China (7.3%), India (6.7%) and Thailand (6%).

Uncertainties over Brexit and a near 10% decline in spending international visitors led to the weak level of growth in the UK.

Spending international visitors dropped 9.7% from £31.5 billion in 2017 to £28.4 billion in 2018 The research was conducted WTTC, which represents the global private sector of Travel & Tourism and has produced the authoritative research on the economic contribution of the sector for almost 30 years.

Growth for 2019 is forecast to be 1.4%, again below the global (3.6%) and European Union (2.4%) averages.

In total, Travel & Tourism contributed 4.2 million jobs in the United Kingdom in 2018 demonstrating the importance of the sector to the social fabric of the country.