Our Mission Statement

The ultimate goal of our project is to develop a publicly accessible profile of the positive and negative economic, social and environmental impacts of cruise ships on the city.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Keeping an Eye on Tourism the World Around

            The state of travel and tourism in the world has been monitored by the World Tourism and Travel Council (WTTC) since 1990.  Currently, WTTC is headed by President and CEO Jean-Claude Baumgarten, a French businessman who spent almost 30 years in management with air France, eventually climbing to become the Advisor to the Chairman.  He, along with an executive team of similar backgrounds and over 100 members, seek to profile the status of travel and tourism, as well as its impact on the worlds economy.  Publications profiling 176 countries are released annually, and plans to study and report on individual cities are underway.  The largest publication, however, is Progress and Priorities, the yearly report on achievements and progress toward their ultimate goals.  It also contains the financial information regarding travel and tourism in the world economy, revealing just how much the industry has been growing, and the numbers are astonishing.

            Progress and Priorities 2007/08 states that in 2007, the direct and indirect elements of travel and tourism were expected to account for 10.4% of the world GDP, roughly $5.39 trillion.  Over 231 million jobs were expected to be a result of travel and tourism, representing over 8% of the worlds total employment.  These numbers increased in the next year, when WTTC released Progress and Priorities 2008/09.  It estimated that in 2008, the direct and indirect impact of travel and tourism would total to $5.89 trillion, and would contribute 238 million jobs to the world’s employment.  To put this in perspective, $5.89, and even $5.39 trillion, is larger than the national GDP of every country in the world except for the United States.  These numbers are expected to only go up.  WTTC predicts that by 2019, the contribution to the world GDP will be $10.48 trillion, more than double Japan’s current GDP. 

            The WTTC not only monitors the economics of travel and tourism, but also the tourist numbers and modes of transportation.  According to their statistics, cruise shipping has seen an increase akin to that of the entire industry.  In the ten-year span between 1998 and 2008, international tourist numbers climbed 36% from 1,291,120,000 to 1,756,310,000, and cruise ship passengers rose from 17,069,100 to 33,358,300, an increase of over 95%.  In the same ten-year period, world tourists increased by one third, but cruise tourists almost doubled, illustrating the resurgence that the industry has experienced in recent years.  

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