PH lands 13th in top tourism countries
Photo: The tourist island of Boracay, set to reopen later tgis month, is expected to further boost tourisms impressive numbers. The Department of Tourism reprted that in its half year figures, foreign tourists increased by as much as 10 % despite the closure.of thr famous resort island. (Photo:DOT)

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) says that out of 185 countries, the Philippines ranked 13th among the top 15 tourism powerhouses that recorded "absolute growth" within the last seven years.

In the WTTC`s "Power and Performance Report,"185 states were assessed based on its travel and tourism sector`s performance from the period of 2011 to 2017 in four key areas: contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), international visitor spending, domestic spending, and capital investment.

In the report, the Philippines ranked 15th in terms of "performance" or based on its compound annual growth rates between the period in WTTC`s four indicators.

In terms of contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the Philippines ranks 8th among states that have seen the largest growth in travel and tourism`s contribution to GDP from 2011 to 2017, with USD66.3 billion share in 2017 alone. At an annual growth rate of 14.2 percent, the country placed 7th among states where travel and tourism contribution to GDP grew fastest.

The WTTC noted that the Philippines is "the only country" in the top ten that is in both "power" and "performance" rankings of GDP contribution.

International visitor spending

A total of 9 countries, on the other hand, reached the top 30 in both size and speed of visitor export growth namely Colombia, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Mexico, Philippines, Qatar, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

The Philippines landed on the 21st spot for posting a 3.7 percent increase in the last seven years in terms of visitor export growth, or the spending by foreign visitors in a country. In 2017, WTTC said the country earned USD7.5 billion from international visitor spendings.

On the other hand, it ranked 23rd among states with fastest growing international visitor spend or an 11.9 percent in visitor export growth per annum.

Domestic spending

As far as domestic spending is concerned, the Philippines placed sixth in the power rankings for having USD45.7 billion in last year`s domestic travel and tourism spending, an "actual growth" of USD26.2 billion from 2011 to 2017, according to WTTC.

This makes the country third among 185 states in terms of highest annual growth rate.

In all four indicators, the Philippines only fell below the top 30 in investment after placing 44th in the power ranking of capital investment and 87th in its performance ranking.

In the WTTC`s overall "Power" ranking, which ranks the top 30 nations whose travel and tourism has grown most from 2011 to 2017, the country shared 13th place with Malaysia. The top 10 countries were China, United States, India, Mexico, United Kingdom, Spain, Turkey, Canada, Indonesia, and Australia and United Arab Emirates which tied for the 10th spot.

Meanwhile, in the report`s "Performance" ranking listed the following top 10 countries: Myanmar, Iraq, Georgia, Rwanda, Iceland, Nicaragua, Qatar, Congo, Armenia, and Ivory Coast.

DOT secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat earlier noted that the Philippine tourism is a "booming" industry.

During the Ministerial Round Table of Tourism EXPO 2018 in Japan on September 20, she revealed that the country is "more than five years ahead" of its domestic tourism targets.

In 2017, the tourism industry alone accounted for 12.2 percent of the Philippines` GDP, a figure which exceeds the 10-percent share of GDP the government targeted for 2022.

In the same year, at least 96.7 million domestic tourist arrivals were recorded, exceeding the 86.2 million target set for 2022. A total of 6.62 million international arrivals in 2017 were seen, an 11.3-percent increase from 2016, she added. ( with reports from PNA)