The travel and tourism industry appears to be getting closer to recovery this year, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) said this week, adding that based on the findings of a new study, millions of jobs could be recovered.
Citing fresh research, the global travel and tourism sector’s contribution to the world economy could reach 8.6 trillion dollars in 2022, just 6.4 percent behind pre-pandemic 2019 levels.
“[The year] 2022 is poised for a strong recovery if governments continue to open up and remove restrictions to travel. Our sector could recover more than 58 million jobs and generate 8.6 trillion dollars which would boost economic recovery around the world,” said WTTC President and CEO Julia Simpson.
In 2019, the sector generated 10.4 percent of global GDP and accounted for more than 330 million jobs.
The WTTC is basing its forecast on the continuation of vaccine and booster rollouts worldwide. It also notes that easing restrictions to allow international travel will contribute the creation of some 58 million jobs in 2022, which can reach more than 330 million, just 1 percent below pre-pandemic levels and up 21.5 percent over 2020.
“As people start traveling again, governments must implement simplified rules, including the use of digital solutions. Travel of the future should be contactless while guaranteeing safety,” said Simpson.
In view of the findings, the WTTC has joined global tourism and travel associations in a call for the removal all restrictions for fully vaccinated travelers and enabling international travel using digital solutions that allow travelers to prove their status in a fast, simple and secure way.
Late last month, the WTTC said travel in Europe was expected to post a strong recovery in the coming months also, forecasting a 250 percent increase in European bookings for Easter compared to 2021.
On Thursday, the European Commission proposed extending the use of the EU Digital Covid Certificate by a year until June 30, 2023.