Contribution of Travel & Tourism Industry to GDP and Employment in India

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The Indian travel and tourism industry in India is likely to see a tremendous growth this year on the because of new government policies, visa reforms, according to a report by the World Travel and Tourism Council. India’s travel and tourism economy is supposed to grow more than 10% in 2016 over last year trends, exceeding the 6.9% growth that the global forum has predicted for the South Asian region. In 2014-15 the travel industry contributed Rs 7.6 trillion and 36.6 million jobs to the Indian economy. By the end of 2016, the travel and tourism sector will contribute more than Rs 10 trillion or 8% of India’s gross domestic product (GDP) and 37 million jobs almost more than 9% of total employment in India, the report said.

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“India has an excellent opportunity to benefit from new visa reforms, government support to industry and infrastructure improvements under the new government,” David Scowsill president of WTTC said in his latest interview, he add that India’s estimated tourism growth was the highest for any major economy.But the overall contribution of India’s travel and tourism sector to the overall economy is still relatively low (6.7% of GDP, against a global average of 9.8%) but in future this will improve.

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In last November 2015, India expanded the visa on arrival scheme to 43 nations from 12 countries earlier. Government wants similar facility for 150 countries. Investment in the travel and tourism industry is likely to rise by 10% in 2016 over 2015 when travel and tourism investments in the India is accounted for Rs 2.12 trillion, or 6.02% of total investments received. It should be rise by more than 6.5% per annum over the next 10 years to Rs 4500 billion in 2025 or 7% of the total, travel and tourism industry is the sector which has the potential to contribute to 50 million jobs to the India economy by 2025.

The worldwide contribution to GDP from travel and tourism has grown by 3.8% by the end of this year and the sector will contribute 285 million jobs, directly and indirectly.

There are lots of improvements in the process of granting visas are welcome, visa liberalization is still an issue in this industry. The recent demand of biometric data for visitors from UK, France and Germany will have far reaching affluence on travel to India from these countries in future.

India also needs to rethink and launch it’s the Incredible India campaign again to “maximize India’s new visa regime” so that more tourist visit India because there will be more contribution to GDP if number of visitors increase.

Security and safety of tourists remain the major concerns

  • Government has to think and take action against the culprits who are damaging the country’s reputation on an international level from the negative perceptions of the treatment of women and women travelers in India.
  • India is aggressively trying to raise the share of foreign travel arrivals to 2% of total international tourists over the next couple of years, from 0.64%. In 2014, foreign exchange earnings from tourist arrivals totalled $19.68 billion, compared with $18.45 billion in 2014.
  • While it is possible for India to achieve more than 2% of global tourists by 2017, India need to act and take major steps to improve travel industry fast to achieve it.

The country has recently improved its visa processes scheme but more needs to be done on the implementation of this scheme and to bring even more countries into this programme.

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