Tourism – a source of prosperity for Africa

Tourism – a source of prosperity for Africa


Tourism is not only about your dream destination It is also about enabling a better life for others Tourism is a lifeline for millions of Africans More than 21 million Africans work in tourism Tourism contributes 8.5% to the continent’s GDP and almost half of all its services exports and tourism can do much more This is what the 2017 Economic Development in Africa Report is about The sector is Vibrant and growing Tourism arrivals in Africa have grown annually by six percent over the past 20 years and they are expected to rise further As economies grow and incomes rise More Africans will afford to travel and more business trips will be required The power tourism is increasingly driven by Africans themselves Today four out of ten international tourists in Africa come from the continent In Sub-Saharan Africa it is even two out of three and importantly, these shares are rising And did you know that in some countries African tourists spend as much as tourists from outside the continent? Continental, intra-regional and domestic tourism is of great value and an immense opportunity not to be missed It should be supported through streamlined and less stringent visa requirements open skies, convertible currencies and tourism policies that plan for it and Tourism is much more than a source of income It is a driver of economic transformation in Africa but this will not happen on its own Countries must improve their capacity to retain more tourism value-added in their economies This happens through strengthening inter-sectoral linkages and the report explains how There is something else Tourism can be pro-poor and create opportunities for decent work In African countries with a large tourism sector employment is less vulnerable and more opportunities exist for youth and where tourism thrives, women thrive In Africa more than 30 percent of tourism businesses are run by women this is a much higher share than in most sectors and 36 percent of its tourism ministers are women this is the highest share in the world There’s also an overlooked but crucial power Tourism can foster peace It is not only that peace drives tourism Tourism also contributes to peace through creating economic opportunities and fostering understanding amongst cultures Tourism can be a powerful engine for economic and social development and for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals We have to tap this potential with the right policies Our report explains how Africa can better harness the tourism sector for transformative and inclusive growth not only today but also tomorrow

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