Asia Pacific with the growth of 14% and the Middle East with 20% led growth in the global tourism industry in the period.
The organization said Vietnam and Myanmar had the same growth of 35%, ranking the two countries as particular countries which had strong results in the period, behind Sri Lanka and Japan.
“Asia in particular is experiencing a very dynamic rebound, with strong results from Sri Lanka (49%), Japan (36%), Vietnam (35%), Myanmar (35%), Hong Kong (China) (23%), Macao (China) (23%) and Singapore (23%),” says the report.
UNWTO said Asia had once again shown a strong capacity for recovery. International tourism has been a driving force in the region, currently the second most visited region in the world with 181 million international tourist arrivals, or 21% of the world total.
However, the organization still maintained its forecast that the global tourism sees continued growth but risks remain. “Although we are witnessing a clear recovery in international tourism, we must remain cautious,” UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai said in the statement.
Nguyen Van Tuan, General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, said that local travel remained a key pillar for the country’s tourism, with up to 17 million Vietnamese people traveling in the first half, representing over two-thirds of the figure for all of 2009.
Growth in international visitor arrivals was 32.6% in the first half, with more than 2.51 million foreign visitors coming to the country. The number reached nearly 3.35 million in the first eight months, up 35.2% year-on-year.