Qatar Tourism Soars to New Heights, Poised for Record-Breaking Year

The Qatari travel and tourism sector has reached new heights, exceeding pre-pandemic levels in key metrics like GDP contribution, job creation, and domestic visitor spending, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council's (WTTC) 2024 Economic Impact Research (EIR).

Last year, the sector's contribution to Qatar's GDP surged by an impressive 31% to reach a record-breaking QAR 81. 2 billion, solidifying its position as a crucial pillar of the national economy. This translates to 10. 3% of Qatar's total economic output, demonstrating the industry's significant impact.

Beyond its economic contribution, travel and tourism also emerged as a powerful driver of employment. The sector created over 20, 300 new jobs in 2023, bringing the total workforce to nearly 286, 000 individuals. This translates to one in eight jobs nationwide, highlighting the sector's role in job creation.

Domestic tourism also experienced a boom. Domestic visitor spending reached a record high of QAR 16. 1 billion, showcasing the growing appetite for local travel experiences.

International visitor spending, while not reaching its pre-pandemic peak, still exhibited significant growth. Despite hosting the FIFA World Cup in 2022, international spending increased by nearly 40% year-on-year to reach QAR 60. 4 billion. However, it fell short of the previous peak by QAR 1. 2 billion.

Looking ahead, 2024 promises to be a banner year for Qatari tourism. The WTTC forecasts the sector will contribute a record-breaking QAR 90. 8 billion to the economy, representing 11. 3% of the total GDP. This growth is expected to translate to job creation, with projections indicating over 334, 500 jobs supported by travel and tourism, accounting for 15. 8% of the total workforce.

International visitor spending is poised for a significant rise in 2024, with forecasts predicting a record spend of QAR 69. 6 billion. Domestic spending is also expected to climb, reaching QAR 12 billion.

This success story can be attributed to the Qatari government's commitment to fostering collaboration between the public and private sectors. This collaborative effort focuses on developing diverse and immersive experiences for visitors, propelling the industry's growth. Dedicated working groups comprised of representatives from various industries have been established to address challenges and leverage private sector expertise.

"Qatar's Travel & Tourism sector is poised to break all records this year, highlighting its significance as a leading destination in the Middle East, " said Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO. "The government's efforts and emphasis on collaboration will propel Qatar's Travel & Tourism growth, setting the stage to play a crucial role in the national economic landscape, promising a future defined by prosperity and opportunity. "

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