SESRIC




International Tourism in the OIC Countries 2022: Prospects and Challenges amid the COVID-19 Pandemic
Date : 27 June 2022

SESRIC launched and presented its flagship report on “International Tourism in the OIC Countries 2022: Prospects and Challenges amid the COVID-19 Pandemic” during the 11th Islamic Conference of Tourism Ministers (ICTM) which was held on 27-29 June 2022 in Baku, Republic of Azerbaijan. The report provides a comprehensive analysis of the state of international tourism in the OIC countries, evaluates the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the tourism and travel sector and proposes a number of policy recommendations for the post-pandemic recovery and development of the tourism sector in OIC countries.

The major findings of the report reveal that the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the tourism sector in OIC countries severely due to the containment measures and wide range of travel restrictions imposed by countries all around the world. In 2020, OIC countries hosted only 70.4 million international tourists instead of a baseline projection of 277.8 million. This sharp decline in tourist arrivals resulted into an estimated loss of USD 155.5 billion in tourism receipts. In 2021, based on the provisional data of the UNWTO, the average tourist arrivals in the OIC group contracted by 78.7% and the receipts went down by 62.9% compared to 2019.

As a result of the pandemic, the average contribution of tourism to employment in the OIC countries declined from 7.5% in 2019 to 6.2% in 2020, corresponding to an estimated loss of 8.6 million jobs. The estimated loss in GDP generated by the travel and tourism sector was measured at USD 293 billion in 2020 in the OIC countries. In terms of intra-OIC tourism receipts, an estimated USD 56.6 billion was lost due to a potential drop of 89 million in intra-OIC tourist arrivals in 2020. Likewise, the pandemic resulted in a 70.1% contraction in the size of the Islamic tourism market in 2020 in the OIC group.

The report also highlights that OIC countries have implemented a wide range of supportive measures and policies to mitigate the negative impacts of the pandemic ranging from setting up internal crisis management mechanisms to offering monetary and fiscal stimulus packages. Yet, the recovery from the pandemic is expected to take several years and additional supportive measures are needed in many OIC countries to achieve a resilient and sustainable recovery.

In this context, the report proposes a set of policy recommendations for the consideration of policymakers like investing in vaccination, developing new tourism products, and enhancing and strengthening intra-OIC cooperation to overcome emerging challenges and spearheading the post-pandemic recovery in the tourism sector.

Online Electronic Version

  • International Tourism in the OIC Countries 2022: Prospects and Challenges amid the COVID-19 Pandemic (English) (Arabic) (French)