International tourism recovers in early 2010

June 29th, 2010 - 9:15 pm ICT by IANS  

Madrid, June 29 (DPA) International tourism grew by seven percent to more than 258 million arrivals in the first four months of 2010, up from the corresponding period in 2009, the Madrid-based United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) said Tuesday.
Tourism benefited from the gradually improving economic situation and from some high-profile events such as the FIFA Football World Cup in South Africa, the UNWTO said, predicting a growth of three to four percent for the entire year.

The growth took place despite setbacks such as the closure of much of the European airspace for a week due to an ash cloud following the eruption of a volcano in Iceland.

Tourism increased the most in the Middle East (33 percent), while Europe reported the faintest growth, of only 0.3 percent.

The tourism sector would, however, continue facing challenges such as high unemployment and austerity measures in many industrialised countries, the UNWTO said.

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