Global tourism needs a stimulus

Published on : Monday, July 26, 2021

Summer is here and the living is easy, as the old song goes. And both domestic and international holidaying should be increasing in spite of dark clouds of the pandemic still shrouding in some sections of the globe.

But the fall down in 2020 in terms of international tourism, experiencing a drop by 74 per cent has yet to get rebounded. As per a new UN report, so far 2021 has actually “been worse for most destinations with an average global decline of 88 per cent compared to pre-pandemic levels”.

Sadly, the pandemic is still widespread in various parts of the world; more than four million people have lost their lives so far. And more so, it’s not over yet. To quote the UN secretary-general, Antonio Guterres stated somberly, “Vaccines offer a ray of hope, but most of the world is still in the shadows. The virus is outpacing vaccine distribution. This pandemic is clearly far from over; more than half its victims died this year.”

A new report by the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Covid-19 and Tourism, warns: “Vaccines are a critical part of the solution, albeit with considerable uncertainty, even once access and distribution problems are overcome.”

Vaccinations have arrested the spread mainly in the US, Israel, and Western Europe. Yet dearth of vaccine, disorganized distribution, and unwillingness to get vaccinated has weighed down countries like Brazil, India, and South Africa.
Moreover travel restrictions, continually changing and confusing even in Europe, have dampened interests in many destinations.

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