According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) 2018 Economic Impact report the Travel and Tourism market generates 10.4 per cent of the global Gross Domestic Profit (GDP).
This makes it one of the largest economic sectors providing seven million jobs, spreading wealth while encouraging export. The visitor export generated a staggering USD48.7 billion dollars in 2017.
There has been a steady increase in the figures with a 4.6 per cent increase in 2017; and it is expected to raise in the next few years to produce more wins for the industry.
It is estimated the one in five jobs globally is provided by the Tourism sector; Gloria Guevara the president of WTTC commented in their newsletter.
She further stated that 2017 was the best year for Tourism and Travel as tourist were engaging on more travels in North Africa and Europe amidst terrorism threats that had plagued the countries.
This has a knock-on effect with building the assurance of people who depend tourism and travel for their businesses growth and sustainability. She further mentions that it is of paramount importance that we ensure this growth is sustainable though planning, creating partnerships with the public and private sector; as well as communities, to ensure that plans are well maintained and executed flawlessly.
The Nigerian government can capitalise on the huge potential that Tourism could provide for the provision of jobs as the economy rebuilds after the economic crisis it has faced in the past few years.
According to the Yemi Kale, representing the Nigerian National Bureau of Statistics in June 2018 the Tourism market contributed to 34 per cent of Nigeria’s GDP; whilst providing about 20 per cent of employment in the country.
He further spoke on the niche markets which the country holds with its indigenous cultures, vast natural resources and cultural heritage. He further spoke on the vast potential that tourism could directly create through ‘accommodation and food provision, transport, art, entertainment and recreation, and other services” which is estimated to account for 34 per cent of Nigeria’s GDP in 2017 and about 20 per cent of employment”.
These jobs created as well as extra income to families would will be directly linked to Tourism and further linked to related services that work alongside Tourism. Jumia Travels also estimated that Travel are estimated to contribute N3.63 billion to Nigeria’s GDP by the end of 2018 as the number of inbound foreign travelers will increase by 1.5 per cent while employment will rise by 3.4 per cent. These numbers are estimated to be 1.8 million inbound international travelers while creating 3.4 million jobs.
As the industry grows Nigerians are advised to capitalize on the potentials that the industry holds. Nigeria is fortunate to have a vast amount of natural resources and we can capitalize on harnessing them while making some money.
Here is pie that is looking to be eaten, savoured and enjoyed by the nation; all we have to do is raise and take on the opportunity before we miss out on the next big thing.
*Initeme Adukeh is the Founder of Hospitality Groundworks