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World tourism will recover from the pandemic in 2023 after a 10-year growth streak

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The global travel and tourism sectors are expected to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2023 and grow at a rate that will outpace global gross domestic product (GDP) growth, the Thursday the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

The agency expects the sector to register an average annual growth rate of 5.8% between 2022 and 2032, compared to the 2.7% increase in world GDP, and to create 126 million new jobs, it said in a report. published during a conference in Manila.

In 2019, tourism accounted for a tenth of global GDP and jobs, but the coronavirus pandemic decimated this $9.6 trillion industry, halving the value of its output and leaving 62 million unemployed. jobless people.

“The recovery is going to be so stellar that it is going to come back very strongly. This depends, of course, on the reopening of China,” said WTTC president Julia Simpson, who called on all governments to reopen borders.

China’s “COVID zero” policy and persistent lockdowns have disrupted global trade and domestic and international travel.

The GDP of the travel and tourism sector is forecast to reach $8.35 trillion this year and $9.6 trillion in 2023, a return to its pre-pandemic level.

Employment in the tourism sector is projected to recover to 300 million this year and 324 million in 2023, up from 333 million in 2019, according to the WTTC.

In Asia-Pacific alone, the GDP of the hospitality industry is likely to hit $3.4 trillion in 2023, already up from the $3.3 trillion it saw in 2019, it said.

Compared to North America and Europe, travel has lagged behind in Asia-Pacific due to strict border restrictions in many countries. In Southeast Asia, travelers are getting back on planes as COVID-19 quarantine and entry regulations are lifted in the region. But full recovery will be slow, industry insiders say.

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