Notwithstanding the crippling effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Philippines’ travel and tourism industry managed to register a significant growth 20.5 percent last year as opposed to the previous year’s 80 percent decline.
According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the domestic tourism and travel sector’s contribution to the national economy climbed 129.5 percent year on year, hitting the $41 billion mark.
The World Travel & Tourism Council’s latest Economic Impact Report revealed last year the Philippine’s Travel & Tourism contribution to the nation’s economy climbed 129.5.% year on year, to reach US$ 41 billion.
Following an 80% decline, this impressive rise saw it ranked as the world’s fourth fastest growing economy during 2021.
Julia Simpson, president and CEO of the World Travel & Tourism WTTC, made this report at the opening of the three-day Global Travel and Tourism Summit in being held in Manila.
Simpson unwrapped the WTTC’s Economic Impact Report (EIR) which showed that in 2021, the local travel and tourism sector accounted for 7.8 million job in 2021, representing a 20.5 percent increase over the previous year, compared to the global growth of only 6.7 percent.
Over 1,000 local and foreign delegates, among them chief executive officers, business leaders, government ministers, travel experts and international media were taking part in the summit.
Before the pandemic, the Philippines’ travel and tourism industry contributed 22.5 percent (estimated at $92.6 billion) of the gross domestic product (GDP).
However, due to damaging travel restrictions amidst the pandemic, the 2020 figure plunged to $17.8 billion representing 80.7 percent decline, translated to 4.8 percent share to the GDP.
The EIR showed that there was a remarkable improvement in 2021 at $ 41billion, representing a 10.4 percent share of the nation’s total economy, signaling that recovery of the sector was well underway.
The latest EIR also predicted that the Philippines’ travel and tourism contribution to GDP would grow by 6.7 percent over the next decade, exceeding the expected c overall economy average growth rate of 5.6 percent.
“Our latest EIR for the Philippines signals the astonishing recovery of the country’s travel and tourism sector,” Simpson said.
She said this would also give rise to a massive employment boost for the sector, leading to the recovery of 1.3 million more jobs compared to the previous year. “Our expert analysis shows that the economy has turned a corner and is firmly on the road to recovery.”
The WTTC forecast suggested that the local travel and tourism industry’s contribution to GDP could be worth in excess of $155 billion in 2032, accounting for 21.4 percent of the whole economy.
With travel and tourism employment forecast to grow annually by an average of 3 percent over the next 10 years, nearly three million new jobs could be created, accounting for 21.5 percent of all jobs in the Philippines.
The WTTC’s 2022 EIR marked a vast change in fortunes for the country’s travel and tourism which suffered serious setbacks due to the pandemic, but was seen as firmly on the road to recovery.