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Tourism in India– II

15/05/2021 at 7:13 AM

Globally as well as in the Asia-Pacific region, the share of International Tourist Arrivals increased during 2015-17, but in the subsequent two years, the shares reduced. Globally, despite small reductions in shares in 2018 and 2019, India’s rank improved fairly. In the Asia-Pacific region, the rank in 2018 remained unchanged and then went down a tad.  

Dr Manas R  Das

In the previous week, we discussed the significance of foreign tourism for the Indian economy. Today, we assess India’s position in the global tourism market.

India’s Position in the World

Based on the Ministry of Tourism data, Table 1 assesses India’s position in the world in terms of (a) International Tourist Arrivals (ITAs) and (b) International Tourist Receipts (ITRs).

Table 1: India’s Position in the World – ITAs and ITRs

YearShare of ITAs in India inShare of ITRs in India in
WorldAsia-PacificWorldAsia-Pacific
ShareRankShareRankShareRankShareRank
151.15%244.84%71.73%145.91%7
161.21%264.90%81.84%136.18%7
171.26%265.19%72.03%136.89%7
181.24%225.01%71.97%136.55%7
19 P1.23%234.97%82.03%126.78%6

Based on India Tourism Statistics 2020. P – Provisional.

Globally as well as in the Asia-Pacific region, the share of ITAs increased during 2015-17, but in the subsequent two years, the shares reduced. Globally, despite small reductions in shares in 2018 and 2019, India’s rank improvedfairly. In the Asia-Pacific region, the rank in 2018 remained unchanged and then went down a tad.  

In respect of ITRs, the share of India, both in the world and Asia-Pacific, reflected, by and large, an upward trend. While, globally, its rank moved up, the same in the Asia-Pacific region remained stagnant throughout before moving one position up in 2019.

During 2019, Bangladesh, USA and the UK (in that order) were the top three countries of inbound tourists to India constituting nearly 47% of the total. These, along with the next seven countries, i.e., Australia, Canada, China (Main), Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Germany and Russian Federation (in that order) totaled over 67%.

World Economic Forum’s Report

A comprehensive and scientific analysis is provided by the World Economic Forum (WEF)’s “Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report 2019”. According to the Report, India scored 4.4 in the Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index 2019, which propelled it to move up in the ladder to the 34th top position in a group of 140 nations. At this position, India climbed up 6 places from its previous position in 2017 and showed the greatest improvement over 2017 among the top 25% of all countries ranked in the report. In the Asia-Pacific region, it was ranked 10/22 nations. Among the BRICS nations, it came third, preceded by China and Brazil  with scores at 4.9 and 4.5, respectively.

The WEF ranking is based on 14 pillars – each pillar consisting of several parameters. India’s position as per each of these pillars is summarized in Table 2.

Table 2: WEF Report – India’s Position as per Pillars

Pillars: AspectsScore 1-7 (1=worst 7= best)Rank among 140
Pillar 1: Business Environment4.939
Pillar 2: Safety and Security4.5122
Pillar 3: Health and Hygiene4.4105
Pillar 4: Human Resources and Labour Market4.576
Pillar 5: ICT Readiness3.6105
Pillar 6: Prioritization of Travel & Tourism4.394
Pillar 7: International Openness3.851
Pillar 8: Price Competitiveness6.113
Pillar 9: Environmental Sustainability3.6128
Pillar 10: Air Transport Infrastructure4.233
Pillar 11: Ground and Port Infrastructure4.528
Pillar 12: Tourist Service Infrastructure2.8109
Pillar 13: Natural Resources4.514
Pillar 14: Cultural Resources and Business Travel5.58

Green indicates ‘Very Good’ and blue ’Good’.

One of the significant facilities for the foreign tourists is the e-Tourist Visa scheme. Under the scheme, nearly3 million visas were issued during 2019 of which a fourth went to tourists from the UK and USA. While four countries in Europe (France, Germany, Italy and Spain in that order) receivedabout 14% of the total e-visas, another six in Asia (China, Malaysia, Thailand,Singapore, Israel and Japanin that order) receivedabout 21%. Russia, Australia and Canada in that order had a combined share of 12%.

(To be continued)

About the Author:

Dr. Manas R. Das is a former senior economist of State Bank of India. He has over 30 years of experience as an economist in two large commercial banks. Academically, he is a gold medalist in Bachelor of Arts with Economics Honours from Utkal University, followed by Master’s in Economics from Delhi School of Economics and Doctorate in Economics from Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics. He is also a Certified Associate of the Indian Institute of Bankers. He has won several awards, besides being a prolific writer.

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