Jordan tourism revenues slump amid fear of regional conflicts

Published on : Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Jordan tourism sectorRegional conflict is adversely affecting the tourism industry in Jordan. The raging violence in Iraq, Syria neighbouring Jordan has forced the latter to turn to contingency measures to try to revive its tourism industry.



Although tourism contributed 14 percent of the kingdom’s gross domestic product, to the tune of $4.4bn in 2014, the flow of tourism revenue is becoming a trickle.



Jordan;s natural wonders such as rose-pink rock-hewn city of Petra, desert at Wadi Rum and attracted hundreds of thousands of Western tourists.



But the 2011 Arab Spring that swept across the Middle East and North Africa has frightened the Western tourists whose flow has trickled.



In those four years ten hotels in Petra have had to shut their doors as the tourists nearly halved. Tourism revenue decreased by 15 percent during the first four months of 2015 on last year, falling to $1.5bn.



In order to revive the dying the tourism sector, the head of the country’s tourism office, Abderrazak Arabyat, has now come up with an emergency plan.



As Jordan has become the prime medical destination in the Middle East and North Africa, with 250,000 foreign patients treated in 2014, thoughts are being given to boost medical tourism. New markets including Turkey, China, Japan and South Korea will be approached.


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