African Travel and Tourism Industry could contribute $168bn to GDP in the next decade

African Travel and Tourism Industry could contribute $168bn to GDP in the next decade

Emphasizing that the sector’s growth pace could be accelerated, the report highlights the necessity for African governments to implement reforms, especially in areas such as enhancing air transport infrastructure, streamlining visa issuance, and robust marketing strategies.

The travel and tourism industry has the capacity to contribute an estimated $168 billion to Africa’s GDP while generating about 18 million new jobs over the next decade. This is the finding of a report published on November 2 by the World Travel and Tourism Council.

The report entitled “Unlocking opportunities for Travel & Tourism growth in Africa” outlines an expected average growth rate of 5.1% per year, based on the current trajectory observed across the continent, almost twice as fast as the economy as a whole.

The document suggests that this pace of growth could be accelerated if African governments implement three key policies to unlock the sector’s potential: improving air transport infrastructure, facilitating visa issuance and strengthening tourism marketing. The size of the African travel and tourism industry has more than doubled over the past two decades. At the start of the millennium, the sector was worth $75 billion. This figure reached $186 billion in 2019, or around 7% of the continent’s GDP.

This remarkable growth has also led to the creation of several million new jobs. In 2019, the tourism sector employed 25 million people on the continent, compared with 12.3 million in 2000.