Some more numbers. This time from the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA).
In its Asia-Pacific tourism demand forecast for the next three years, the organisation estimates that international arrivals to the region will increase on an average by 2.7 per cent every year till 2012. The forecast, by PATA’s Executive Board, is quite realistic given the likely pace of global economic growth over the next few years. Actually, it’s pretty much the most sensible estimate of short-term tourism growth that I have seen in recent weeks.
According to the organisation, this year will witness only a 1 per cent increase in international arrivals to Asia-Pacific. This will grow to 4.5 per cent next year, before “stabilising at around 4 per cent in 2012,” it adds. Among all the sub-regions, South Asia is tipped to grow the fastest at 4.9 per cent per year till 2012. Of course, all these estimates could be hit for a six if there are any major economic, social or health-related disasters, PATA cautions. Conversely, better-than-expected economic growth could help push PATA’s estimates upwards and bring cheer to the tourism and travel industry.