Tourism contribution to economy increases
The travel and tourism sector's contribution to the economy has increased in the year 2013, according to a report.
In 2013, the total contribution of travel and tourism to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) stood at $1.6 billion (Rs 145.3 billion), some 8.2 per cent of the total GDP, the Travel and Tourism Economic Impact 2013 report said, adding that the direct contribution of tourism to GDP was $0.7 billion (Rs 68.8 billion) or 3.9 per cent of the total GDP. "The sector has contributed Rs 68.8 billion directly and Rs 145.3 billion in total to the economy in the year 2013."
Published by World Travel and Tourism Council this week, the report has also projected the tourism sector's contribution to increase to Rs 75.6 billion directly and Rs 157.8 billion in total in the current year 2014.
Leisure travel spending – that is inbound and domestic – generated 86.2 per cent of direct tourism GDP (Rs 95 billion) last year, compared with 13.8 per cent (Rs 15.3 billion) for business travel spending, it said. "Likewise, business travel spending is expected to grow by 15.7 per cent in 2014 to Rs 17.6 billion while leisure travel spending is expected to grow by 8.9 per cent to Rs 103.5 billion in 2014. Domestic travel spending generated 64.5 per cent of direct travel and tourism GDP in 2013 compared with 35.5 per cent for foreign visitor spending or international tourism receipts. Domestic travel spending is is expected to grow by 8.7 per cent in 2014 to Rs 77.3 billion.
Similarly, Nepal received 796,000 visitors in 2013 and generated $0.42 billion (Rs 39.1 billion) in revenue, which is 21.1 per cent of total exports, said the London-based council's annual report that has projected Nepal to attract 861,000 international tourist arrivals in 2014, with an increase of 11.9 per cent in income.
Likewise, Nepal is expected to have attracted capital investment of Rs 14.6 billion in 2013, and investment in the sector is expected to grow by 2.7 per cent in 2014. Investment in the travel and tourism sector in 2012 amounted to Rs 12.5 billion or 4.1 per cent of the total investment, the report said, adding that Nepal is far behind in capital investment in the travel and tourism sector compared to other countries. "Nepal is ranked 126th in terms of attracting investment in tourism, whereas India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are ranked fourth, 71st and 83rd respectively in the South Asian region.
The sector has directly employed 504,000 in 2013 that is some 3.2 per cent of the total employment in the country. The share is expected to rise by 6.4 per cent in 2014, it added. "Tourism supported jobs include employment by hotels, travel agents, airlines and other passenger transportation services and also the activities of the restaurant and leisure industries directly supported by tourists."
In terms of absolute contribution in job creation by the travel and tourism sector, Nepal is ranked 30th among 184 countries. Among South Asian countries, India and Bangladesh ranked 2nd and 12th respectively.
The sector's contribution
The Title – Year 2013 – Year 2014
Tourist arrivals – 796,000 – 861,000
Direct jobs – 504,000 – 536,000
Income from tourists – Rs 39.1 billion – Rs 43.8 billion
Domestic travel spending – Rs 71.1 billion – Rs 77.3 billion
Total contribution to GDP – Rs 145.3 billion – Rs 157.8 billion
Direct contribution to GDP – Rs 68.8 billion – Rs 75.6 billion
Investment – Rs 14.6 billion – Rs 15 billion