UNWTO reports healthy growth of international tourism in first half of 2011
International tourism grew by almost 5% in the first half of 2011 totalling a new record of 440 million arrivals. Results confirm that, in spite of multiple challenges, international tourism continues to consolidate the return to growth initiated in 2010.
All world (sub)regions showed positive trends with the exception of the Middle East and North Africa. Results were better than expected in Europe (+6%), boosted by the recovery of Northern Europe (+7%) and Central and Eastern Europe (+9%), and the temporary redistribution of travel to destinations in Southern and Mediterranean Europe (+7%) due to developments in North Africa (-13%) and the Middle East (-11%). Sub-Saharan Africa (+9%) continued to perform soundly.The Americas (+6%) was slightly above the world average, with remarkably strong results for South America (+15%). Asia and the Pacific grew at a comparatively slower pace of 5%, but this more than consolidates its 13% bumper growth of 2010.