How Will Tourism in LMICs Change Post-COVID?
By Lisa Cornish
In January, the United Nations World Tourism Organization forecast a growth of 3% to 4% in international tourist arrivals worldwide for 2020. But the impact of COVID-19 has seen those numbers slashed as international travel comes to a grinding halt, impacting the tourism sector and tourist-reliant industries.
In Rwanda, tourism is a strategic sector for the government — part of its transformation and modernization of the economy. In 2019, tourism contributed to 10% of the country’s GDP and was responsible for 8% of all employment, according to a recent webinar. Between 2008 and 2019, the sector was growing at an average of 11% each year. Low- and middle-income countries had a small share of the international tourism market, but were growing at a higher rate — 9% growth annually, compared to 4% globally — and were seen as providing new opportunities for economic development.
Photo courtesy of Leander Wattig.