Tourism offers much to the EU gets a little

Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Industry and Entrepreneurship, travelled to Athens, where he attended the conference organised by the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises (SETE). (EC Audio Visual Services).

Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Industry and Entrepreneurship, travelled to Athens, where he attended the conference organised by the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises (SETE). (EC Audio Visual Services).

The summer giant of European tourism woke up again from its winter hibernation and is about to favour the crisis and unemployment stricken southern regions of the Old Continent and not only. For a brief period of one week or so the entire population of countries in the misty and grey north travel southwards to the sun. At the same time they help revive the sleepy during the winter months sea-side resort towns and villages in the Mediterranean coasts. In this way the sun thirsty northerners create millions of jobs in the recession stricken regions of Spain, Italy, Greece, Cyprus and south France but also in mega tourist destinations like Paris, London, Rome and Berlin.

Offers much gets a little

There is no doubt that the European tourist sector is a major industry for the Union, producing large parts of the GDP in many countries and offering millions of jobs. Unfortunately the EU budget spends almost nothing for the sectors’ development, while other sectors of economic activity of great interest to Germany or France attract billions every year from the Brussels’ spending. This is another indication that the EU is gradually developing an ideology of empire, where the peripheral countries are of secondary interest in relation to the central regions (see Elias Lacon’s story “Is the EU’s enlargement over-stretched?”).

In the south, tourism remains the heavy industry of Greece, Spain, Portugal south France and Italy. Almost one sixth of the Greek GDP comes from tourism, while in Cyprus this percentage is close to one-third. Entire regions and millions of jobs depend completely on tourism. It’s not only hotels and taverns that profit from this business. Agricultural production and other local petty industries make a living during the five month summer tourist period from May to September.

On top of that private investments in tourism offer good employment opportunities all year round in countries and regions favoured by the preferences of European holiday makers. Apart from the sun and sea holidays, the industry has developed a whole array of subsectors like religious, health and education tourist activities.

One billion trips

According to the Eurostat, every year EU citizens make around one billion holiday trips. In 2011, the most recent reference year for which complete data is available, residents of the European Union made 1.04 billion holiday trips and spent 5.7 billion nights during those trips. Tourist expenditure amounted to EUR 338 billion. It is even more interesting to note that around 80% of those nights and money spent by EU citizens during their holidays are realised either within their home country or in another EU member state.

In this way the demand by EU citizens for holidays is feeding almost exclusively the internal offer. The huge EU tourist industry however attracts also millions of visitors from around the world. The groups of tourists from Asia taking pictures, is a standard view in the south of Europe but also in prime destinations like Paris.

Trips, Nights, Expenditure EU27 ( 2011)

graph tourismThe internal wave of holiday makers remains though the prime force behind the European tourist industry. According to Eurostat, “More than 3 out of 4 trips were domestic trips (in 2011) – i.e. trips in the tourist’s own country – but in terms of nights spent and expenditure, domestic trips accounted for 60 % and 46 % of the total respectively. For most EU countries, the domestic market was dominant; only for the Benelux countries and Slovenia this was not the case. In the case of Belgium and Luxembourg, more tourists spent their holidays in France – the number one foreign destination – than in their own country”.

Coming to the preference of the EU holiday makers on the average 23.7% of all trips were made in a foreign country: 17.2 % in another EU Member State, 6.5 % outside the Union. Spain was for EU residents the number 1 foreign destination, in terms of number of trips as well as number of nights spent or expenditure. 3 % of all trips made by Europeans were spent in Spain (or 13 % of all trips abroad), followed by Italy and France.

Eurostat notes that “Neighbouring or nearby country was the preferred foreign destination for holiday trips of nearly all the European tourists (in 2011). However, this was not the case for tourists from Romania (Italy), Sweden (Greece) and the UK (Spain). In terms of duration and expenditure, the proximity of the destination became less dominant: further away destinations – also outside Europe – took a bigger share”.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

The racial wealth gap in the US is affecting its citizens and its economy – this is how

The US bugged Europe: Is this news?

What fighting malaria can teach us about linking purpose and business

The West is struggling to hit its climate targets. What would the developing world do differently?

Anti-vaccers: does the empty can rattle the most?

5 futuristic ways to fight cyber attacks

ECB’s Draghi favours a cheaper euro to serve all Eurozone countries

Reusable packaging: 6 benefits beyond sustainability

MWC 2016 LIVE: Ford trumpets new in-vehicle system, “fundamentally rethinks” transportation

Mediterranean migrant drownings should spur greater action by European countries, urge UN agencies

Central African Republic: UN chief hails signing of new peace agreement

Killings and violence targeting ethnic group in DR Congo ‘may amount to crimes against humanity’

FROM THE FIELD: New sensors protect vulnerable Malawians against deadly lightning

UN’s Grandi slams ‘toxic language of politics’ aimed at refugees, migrants

Saudi Arabia expresses ‘regret and pain’ over Khashoggi killing, during UN rights review

The UN’s unyielding effort to tackle sexual abuse and exploitation: our quarterly update

Repression, use of force risk worsening Bolivia crisis: UN human rights chief

Child victims of DRC Ebola outbreak need ‘special attention and care’: UNICEF

UN relief chief urges Security Council to back aid delivery, more funding for millions of Syrians hit by harsh weather

Increased levels of carbon dioxide could reduce brainpower, study finds

Joint U.S.-EU Statement following President Juncker’s visit to the White House

Why we are using these custom-built drones to collect whale snot

EU: Huge surplus in the trade of services with the rest of the world

The smartest cyber investment is collective action. Here’s why

Ireland’s planning to make its Emerald Isle even greener

Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into proposed acquisition of Metallo by Aurubis

EU and Australia launch talks for a broad trade agreement

Commission makes it easier for citizens to access health data securely across borders

Who cares more about taxpayers? The US by being harsh on major banks or the EU still caressing them?

‘We need to do more’ to transform the world, deputy UN chief tells African audiences

Commission celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Jean Monnet Activities promoting European studies worldwide

‘Agile’, multilateral response vital to combat terrorism – UN chief Guterres

MWC19 Wrap Up, in association with The European Sting, GSMA’s Brussels Media Partner for the 6th Consecutive Year

Homicide kills far more people than armed conflict, new UN study shows

Crop yields are up in Syria, but higher prices still cause major strain: new UN report

‘No steps taken’ so far to end Israel’s illegal settlement activity on Palestinian land – UN envoy

Why collective action is the key to saving our forests

AI-assisted recruitment is biased. Here’s how to make it more fair

The refugee crisis seen through the eyes of a young doctor from Turkey

Victim-centred laws ‘paramount’ to combat online sexual abuse against children

Trade is not a weapon. Let’s not use it as one

There are more than 1 billion guns in the world and this is who owns them

The United States divorce rate is dropping, thanks to millennials

Germany and Europe prepare for Trump’s America

The importance of Yellow September and suicide prevention in Brazil

Africa: Urgent action needed to mobilise domestic resources as tax revenues plateau

Those who produce food are among world’s hungriest – UN rights expert

Africa-Europe Alliance: first projects kicked off just three months after launch

The four top Americans who flew to Europe perplexed things about Trump’s intentions

A brief history of cryptography and why it matters

EU adopts retaliative measures in response to US steel and aluminum tariffs

MWC 2016 LIVE: T-Mobile US reveals 5G trial plans

UN chief ‘commends’ leadership of Greece and former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, as name dispute draws to final close

Security Council beats midnight deadline, renews Syria cross-border aid in contentious vote

Stage set for successful 2020 Burundi elections, Foreign Minister tells General Assembly

Mobility package: Parliament adopts position on overhaul of road transport rules

Blockchain could boost global trade by $1 trillion

FROM THE FIELD: Keeping Morocco’s indigenous culture and conservation in balance

The EU risks trade relations with China over the Tata hype about steel

The MWC14 Sting Special Edition

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s