Daniel A. Tanner - May 18, 2015
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Canada’s annual tourism report for the year 2014 is out. Dubbed “Tourism as Canada's Engine for Growth”, the report was released by the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) just recently. It highlights how the tourism industry made great strides last year, playing a pivotal role in the Canadian economy. 

According to the report, all the key indicators for Canada’s tourism industry went up, with this upward trend being mostly observed in revenue growth, the GDP, employment as well as tourist arrivals. For instance, the overseas leisure markets experienced a 10% year-on-year increase in arrivals, making this sector the best performing in the whole industry.

The good tourism prospects for Canada arose from the seemingly insatiable demand for international travel in 2014, with latest figures from the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) showing a surge of up to 4.7% in global travel from 2013. This put the number of international travelers at 1.1 billion-plus in 2014. The sharp increase in global tourism has been attributed to emerging world economies and also a growing number of people in the global middle class, especially in India and China.

The number of tourists from the two Asian giants for the Canadian market in 2014 rose by up to 29% and 19% for China and India respectively.

Tourism earned $17.3 billion, further cementing the industry’s position as one of the most important contributors to the Canadian economy. Having created nearly 627,000 direct jobs, tourism still remains the #1 service export industry. In support of the country's Federal Tourism Strategy, CTC was also able to facilitate the creation of new strategic alliances with other federal government departments, enhancing the success of the hugely effective CAN+ visa program in India and Mexico.

The CTC report was tabled in Parliament by the Minister of Industry, the Honorable James Moore, with some of the key financial benefits that he directly attributed to the Commission's intense marketing programs being:

- $925 million in revenues for the economy
- $122 million in federal taxes
- 7,500 jobs generated or protected in various tourism businesses

With the hugely positive results for the Canadian tourism industry in 2014, the acting chairperson of the Board of Directors at CTC, Scott Allison, says that even better results should be expected in 2015.

The report also revealed a number of achievements by CTC in 2014. The Commission used an innovative content-marketing strategy, CTCTV -- an online bi-weekly television program that covered travel in Canada -- to help China rise to the second spot in the list of Canada's top overseas tourist markets. The Business Events Canada team from CTC also helped in bringing the annual TED conference to the country, something that highlighted to world leaders in arts, business, science and academia the kind of intellectual capital found in Canada.


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