The Economic Times: March, 2014
New Delhi: India's travel and tourism industry is set to grow by about 7.3% in 2014, better than last year, but average spending by foreigners travelling to the country could decline sharply, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council.
This year, revenue from domestic tourism is expected to grow 8.2% compared with 5.1% a year ago, the London-based council has said in its Economic Impact Report, adding that increasing domestic travel, growth of low-cost airlines and upgrading of airport infrastructure will be the growth drivers.
The report, however, says that the growth in the amount international visitors spend in the country could slow to 2.9% from 6.2% in 2013. "The picture in India in general terms is good. But in terms of the global forecast, it is much lower than other countries, like China, which grew at 9.2% in 2013 (and is anticipated to grow at 8.3% in 2014)," said David Scowsill, president and CEO, WTTC.
In 2013, India generated Rs 1.1 lakh crore from foreign visitors.
The figure is likely to grow by 2.9% in 2014, according to the report. International tourist arrivals are expected to touch 7.36 million in 2014 and 13.43 million by 2024. Expenditure by foreign tourists in India is expected to grow 4.3% every year to Rs 1.74 lakh crore in 2024.
In 2013, the travel and tourism industry contributed Rs 2.17 lakh crore or 2% to the country's GDP. This is expected to rise to Rs 4.35 lakh crore in 2024. WTTC, which includes executives of travel companies as members, had said earlier that if five G20 countries (India, China, the US, the UK and Brazil) were to go electronic in their visas, the move could generate five million jobs and $268 billion income.