PakistanTravel & Tour

101st Position: Pakistan’s Low Ranking in World Tourism Development

Pakistan, a country with a rich cultural heritage and breathtaking natural beauty, has been ranked 101st out of 119 countries in the Travel and Tourism Development Index (TTDI) published by the World Economic Forum (WEF). This ranking places Pakistan in the lower-middle-income economy category and as part of the Asia-Pacific regional group.

In the South-East Asian context, Pakistan’s ranking is slightly above Nepal (105) and Bangladesh (109), but significantly below India (39) and Sri Lanka (76). The United Arab Emirates leads the Middle East region, ranking 18th, followed by Saudi Arabia (41), Qatar (53), and Bahrain (18).

The TTDI is a measure of the set of factors and policies that enable the sustainable and resilient development of travel and tourism. It is part of the WEF’s broader work with industry and government stakeholders to build a more sustainable, inclusive, and resilient future for economies and local communities.

The top ten countries in the TTDI are the United States, Spain, Japan, France, Australia, Germany, the United Kingdom, China, Italy, and Switzerland. These countries have been recognized for their favorable business environments, open travel policies, well-developed transport infrastructure, and rich natural, cultural, and non-leisure attractions. They collectively accounted for over 75% of the Travel & Tourism industry GDP in 2022 and 70% of GDP growth between 2020 and 2022.

Despite the challenges faced by the global travel and tourism sector, including global inflation, conflict, and environmental issues such as wildfires in tourist destinations, the sector is showing signs of recovery from the Covid-19 lows. In some cases, it has even exceeded pre-pandemic levels.

However, the report predicts that in the coming years, the travel and tourism industry will bear the brunt of geopolitical tensions, macroeconomic uncertainty, and the possible challenges brought on by artificial intelligence. Despite these challenges, developing economies like Pakistan have shown improvement in TTDI scores. However, many areas still need investment to facilitate tourism conditions.

Recent reports indicate that Pakistan has improved its global rankings of the TTDI by 20 ranks compared to 2019. This improvement reflects a 3.6 percent increase since 2019 and a 14% improvement on its 2019 rankings. Despite these improvements, challenges remain, particularly in air transport infrastructure and tourist services.

Pakistan’s efforts to enhance its tourism sector are evident, with various initiatives to improve ICT readiness and cultural resources. Institutions like the Pakistan Tourism Development Authority and the World Bank have made significant efforts in making Pakistan a more attractive and affordable tourism destination.

The collective efforts put in by these institutions have brought stakeholders on a single platform and successfully created public policy dialogues. This has enabled the provinces to learn best practices from each other. The initiatives under the National Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index (NTTCI) have enabled a structure of institutional learning. This is impacting the improvement of Pakistan’s rankings manifold.

Pakistan has made good progress in bettering its place in the TTDI, but there is still a lot to do. If Pakistan keeps working hard and puts money into the right things, it could climb up the rankings and become a big name in the worldwide travel and tourism market.

Back to top button