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UN Tourism office forecasts record over a billion international tourist arrivals

Friday, May 18th 2012 - 09:15 UTC
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Taleb Rifai, head of the UN World Tourism Organization addresses G20 ministers Taleb Rifai, head of the UN World Tourism Organization addresses G20 ministers

More than one billion tourists will take a trip this year crossing an international boundary, a threshold never before reached, UN officials told a meeting tourism ministers gathering in Mexico this week.

“We will have more than a billion tourists: that means one-seventh of humanity. This has never happened in history,” said Taleb Rifai, head of the UN World Tourism Organization speaking to tourism ministers from the G20 countries.

The number of international tourist arrivals is expected to rise in 2012 by 3.0-4.0 percent, reaching the historic one billion mark by the end of the year, according to WTO figures, rising from some 980 million tourist arrivals recorded in 2011.

International tourism grew by 5.7% in the first two months of 2012, the agency said, surpassing 131 million in January and February, up from 124 million in the same period last year.

The ministerial meeting, in the resort town of Merida in Mexico's Yucatan, continues focusing on strategies to combat barriers to the free movement of tourists around the world

This week’s meeting is the fourth Ministerial Meeting of Tourism (T20), and its agenda included a focus on combating barriers to the free movement of tourists around the world. Delegates attended it from Germany, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, South Korea, United States, France, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, UK, Russia, South Africa, Turkey and the European Union.

Other contributors to the meeting included the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the International Labour Organization (ILO), International Air Transport Association (IATA) and International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Categories: Tourism, International.

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  • JohnN

    Falkland Islands Tourist Board

    UK remains dominant market for tourism to the Falkland Islands with good times ahead

    Wednesday, May 23, 2012
    The UK dominated as the key generating market for tourism in 2011 according to new data released by the Falkland Islands Tourist Board (FITB). Last year land-based tourism from the UK was up 5% to a total of 4,164 arrivals (this figure does not include cruise arrivals).

    This is a trend that’s set to continue. The destination is expecting almost a 20% boost in UK visitors in 2012, totalling almost 5,000 arrivals to this wildlife haven in the South Atlantic. This rise will be partly attributed to the 30th anniversary of the Falklands Conflict. The arrival of oil workers in the Falklands continues to grow and is assisting to drive the upward trend of arrivals.

    “These figures are really encouraging and confirm Brits’ love affair with discovering unspoilt destinations that offer something that little bit different where nature reigns supreme” commented a spokesperson for the tourist board.

    Overall, total tourist arrivals to the Falkland Islands in 2012 are expected to increase by 12% to 57,000, spending around £7million. This figure includes cruise passengers, overnight visitors and domestic tourists. Of this figure, 35,000 are expected to arrival via cruise ships and expedition vessels, whilst 7,430 overnight tourists are anticipated.

    These figures dovetail the uplift in tourism to South America which enjoyed the second highest regional growth rate worldwide, up 10.1% in 2011.

    May 23rd, 2012 - 01:27 pm 0
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