Tourism: 120 million jobs at risk!

Tourism: 120 million jobs at risk!

At least 120 million jobs in the tourism sector are at risk due to the prolonged COVID-19 lockdown across the world.

And in addition to this, jobs in associated sectors are also at risk. They include food service, that provide employment for 144 million workers worldwide and they are also at risk.

UN Secretary-general Antonio Guterres made these remarks in a policy briefing and video address on Tuesday.

He depicted a grim picture of the devastation on global tourism industry from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

He says the industry has a $320bn (£244.5bn) loss in exports in the first five months of the year.

That means international tourist arrivals saw a decrease by more than half while earnings plummeted.

Tourism is the third-largest export sector of the global economy, behind fuels and chemicals, and in 2019 it accounted for 7 per cent of global trade.

“It employs one in every 10 people on Earth and provides livelihoods to hundreds of millions more,” he says.


Mr Guterres says this has been a “major shock” for richer developed nations.

“But for developing countries, it is an emergency, particularly for many small island developing states and African countries”.

UN Secretary-general Antonio Guterres

Tourism for some of those countries represents more than 20 per cent of their GDP and this is only part of the losses these countries are registering.

Export revenues from tourism have fallen three times from what was registered during the 2009 global financial crisis.

Sandra Carvao, the UN World Tourism Organisation’s chief of market intelligence and competitiveness, says, “export revenues from tourism could fall by $910bn (£695.3bn) to $1.2tn (£916.9bn) in 2020.”

That “could reduce global GDP by 1.5 per cent to 2.8 per cent”.

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