Madrid : The international tourism sector has seen uninterrupted growth in arrivals for eight straight years, with 2017's growth being the highest since 2010; with a record performance of US$ 1.6 trillion. This represents an increase of 7 per cent, according to the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).
Additionally, travel industry generated another US$ 240 billion from international passenger transport taken by non-residents. Europe and Africa led the growth, with increases in arrivals of 8 per cent and 9 per cent, respectively.
The UN body, in its latest collection of travel industry highlights, further notes that the strong results were driven by sustained travel demand for destinations across all world regions, including a firm recovery by those that have suffered from security challenges in recent years.
In 2017, China remained the leader in global outbound travel, with an expenditure of US$ 258 billion on international travel industry. This translates to approximately one-fifth of the world's total tourism spending in 2017, which stood at US$ 1.3 trillion, some US$ 94 billion more than in 2016. 2018 is seen to continue with the robust growth, with available data showing that international tourism recorded a year-on-year increase of 6 per cent in arrivals between January and April.