TOURISM IN MEXICO REJOICES OVER FOREIGN TOURISTS

Sara Thopson - Feb 20, 2017
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In 2016, tourism in Mexico reached a new record as to the number of foreign tourists as well as the amount of tourism revenue. The tourism data has increased by 20% during the four-year term of the current administration.

The Tourism Secretary pointed out that by the end of the last year, 35 million international tourists came to visit Mexico, 9% more than in 2015 and 50% more than when the administration first took office.

The tourism ministry estimated the number of domestic visitors in 2016 at 226 million. 89.3 million of them stayed in hotels and 137 million chose other forms of accommodation, such as holiday homes, time-share properties or staying with friends.

Moreover, tourism in Mexico recorded the revenue of 19 571 million dollars, 10.4% more than in 2015 and 54% more than at the start of the current administration.

International tourism increased more than twice in the country compared to the global average. It was also ranked as the 9th most visited country and the 16th in terms of the amount of foreign tourism capital received in 2015.

The tourism secretary pointed out that 17 million foreign tourists arrived in Mexico by airplane, 10.7% more than the 15.2 million in 2015 and 49% more than in 2012.

In his most recent report, he specified that 14.5 million tourists arrived from countries bordering Mexico, 5.4% more than in 2015 and 49% more than in 2012.

Likewise, 6.7 million cruise ship passengers arrived in 2016, 9.5% more than in 2015 and 29% more than in 2012;  the tourism balance amounted to 344 million dollars in 2016, which represents an annual increase of 22.4% and 118% more than at the beginning of the current administration's term in office.

The ministry also recorded that tourism in Mexico represents 8.7% of the GDP, and contributes more to the economy than other important sectors such as the mining, oil and construction industries or even the financial sector.

It was highlighted that at the start of the current administration, tourism represented 8.4% of total economic activity, and that in the last five trimesters, this sector has grown at a faster rate than the economy.

As far as employment statistics are concerned, approximately nine million people, directly or indirectly, work in the tourism sector.

It was specified that in the third trimester of 2016, employment in the tourism sector grew by 4.5%; in contrast, employment numbers at the national level grew by only 2.6% during the same period.

The Tourism Secretary indicated, concerning the six-year term, that an 11% increase in employment in the tourism sector had been recorded, as compared to an increase in national employment levels of only 6.6%.

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