Global tourism hit by recession and swine flu

Global tourism has been hit by the recession and the latest swine flu outbreak, with figures released at the World Travel and Tourism Council conference in Brazil showing global tourism has dropped by two percent.

Worldwide recession has been the biggest contributing factor, and tourism analysts fear that last month’s outbreak of swine flu could see a drop of more than seven percent, a loss of US$2 trillion to the industry.

The United Nations World Trade Organisation (UNWTO) has also released results from the first quarter of the year, showing continuing negative growth from 2008.

While Africa, Central and South America have posted modest gains as destinations, most of Europe, Asia and the Middle East have taken a large hit.

The UNWTO does note that many countries have developed stimulus measures for the industry ranging from fiscal stimulus to reducing taxes and developing financial and physical infrastructure due to the sector’s position as a key driver of economic recovery.

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