Saudi Arabia Tourism Report Q4 2015
BMI View: Saudi Arabia is set to see an increase rise in tourist arrivals between 2015 and 2019, withincreasing numbers of business travellers and religious visitors boosting the tourist market within thecountry. Backed by governmental support, transport infrastructure investment and foreign hotel groupdevelopment, the industry is in good shape. However, regional insecurity and low oil prices present agenuine downside risk that may affect government fiscal spending if continued in the long term.
Job opportunities in Saudi Arabia's tourism and tourism-related sectors will reach 1.7mn by 2020, accordingto a report by the Saudi Commission for Tourism & National Heritage. The report stated that employmentgrowth in the tourism sector is forecast at 10% in 2010-2020, compared with a global growth rate of 2.5%during that same period. Job opportunities in the Saudi tourism sector stood at more than 751,000 in 2014.
This highlights the rapid expansion of the tourism sector to date, and the emphasis which the government isplacing on future economic diversification away from oil revenues. However, we would emphasise thatthere are a number of regional rivals with regards to the tourism industry in the Middle East, many of whichhave already established themselves more firmly, and this could undermine Saudi Arabia's aspirations tobecome the main Middle Eastern tourist destination.
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