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World Travel & Tourism Council launches first city TSA for Lisbon

Travel News Asia Thursday, 10 May 2007

On Wednesday, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) launched preliminary findings of the Simulated Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) project for the Lisbon region.

Commissioned by Turismo de Lisboa, the main purpose of this TSA project is to fully understand the value of travel and tourism to the economy and job creation of the Lisbon region.

Using the most sophisticated combination of macro-economic research and forecasts, regional accounting data, information and support by local entities as INE, Turismo de Portugal and Banco de Portugal, as well as travel and tourism variables and econometric modeling, WTTC and research partner Oxford Economics, produced a comprehensive Tourism Satellite Account for the Lisbon region. This project covered all concepts of travel and tourism 'Demand', from personal consumption to business purchases, exports, capital investment and government spending. This project also quantified the contribution of travel and tourism to gross domestic product (GDP) and employment, producing results that can be compared with other industries and the economy as a whole to provide credible statistical information that will assist in policy- and business decision-making.

Speaking at a press conference held in Lisbon on Wednesday, Fonto de Carvalho, President of Turismo de Lisboa said, "The Lisbon region is one of the worlds first capital city economies to develop Simulated Tourism Satellite Accounting. With a full understanding of the value of travel and tourism to the economy and job creation of the Lisbon region, our decision-makers can form sound policy decisions, and can quantify the continued performance of travel and tourism on an ongoing basis. Furthermore local, national and international investors can gain valuable insights to the opportunities prevalent across this region."

Results of this project show that, travel and tourisms direct and indirect impact on the Lisbon region will contribute 9.1% to Gross Domestic Product in 2007, growing at a rate of 4.6%, per annum over the coming decade, to reach 11.3% by 2017. In comparison, annual growth of travel and tourisms contribution to GDP in Portugal will be 3.2% and across the European Union it will be 2.8%.

In employment terms, travel and tourism is forecast to account for 9.8% of total employment (139,000 jobs) this year, growing to 13.3% (189,900 jobs) by 2017 across the Lisbon region. The Lisbon regions annual growth rate in employment of 3.2% is much higher than that of Portugal (1%, per annum) and the European Union (1.3%, per annum).

Results for Visitor Exports in the Lisbon region also record a strong performance, growing by 16.6% from 2006 to 2007, to represent 20.1% of total exports for the region. Over the coming decade, Visitor Exports in the Lisbon region are expected to grow at an annual rate of 6.3%, contributing 26.2% to total exports by 2017. This compares to just 4.5% growth per annum up to 2017 across Portugal and 3.4%, per annum across the European Union.

Jean-Claude Baumgarten, President, WTTC, speaking at the press conference said, "The Tourism Satellite Account project reflects the strength of travel and tourism in the Lisbon region and points to strong performance over the coming decade. These findings will play an important role in attracting the attention of international investors and the worlds leading travel and tourism brands to the Lisbon region. However, international competition is fierce, leaving no room for complacency. A concerted effort will be required by all the key stakeholders, to ensure that these forecasts are reached and even surpassed."

John Walker, Chairman and Chief Economist of Oxford Economics added, "Travel and tourism is one of the worlds fastest growing industries. The Lisbon region is well-placed to benefit from this strong growth, which has the potential to create 50,000 jobs locally over the next decade. To realize this tourism potential, however, Lisbon must sustain efforts to attract foreign visitors and facilitate new business ventures."

The Simulated Tourism Satellite Account project for the Lisbon region includes a series of policy recommendations aimed at realizing the full potential of Travel & Tourism to the regions economy.

Drawing on some of the policy recommendations that have emerged, Jean-Claude Baumgarten said, Turismo de Lisboa is ideally placed to promote a shared vision for travel and tourism as an engine for wealth formation and job creation across the region, in a way which protects and nurtures historic, cultural and natural assets. Authorities must also pay particular attention to the removal of barriers to growth. Without consistent investment in the development of travel and tourism infrastructure, streamlined regulations which omit bureaucracy and unnecessary red tape, these forecasts can be put in jeopardy. Continued investment in the development of human resources will also define the long-term success of travel and tourism in this region.

The full and final report will be launched at the end of May 2007.

See other recent news regarding: Lisbon, WTTC, Tourism, Research, Survey

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