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Tourism to contribute 10% of UAE’s economy in 2023 

WTTC’s latest report estimates the tourism sector to create 7,000 jobs this year

Tourism to contribute 10% of UAE’s economy in 2023 
[Source photo: Anvita Gupta/Fast Company Middle East]

The travel and tourism sector is showing a rapid growth in the UAE as the country continues to be a popular destination for international tourists. The sector is expected to contribute to 10% of the country’s economy, with around $49.18 billion, in 2023, says the World Travel and Tourism Council. 

The estimate for this year is just 1.6% less than that of $49.9 billion in 2019, WTTC said in its latest Economic Impact report. The global body expects the sector to have higher employment levels than in the pre-pandemic years. It expects to have around 7,000 new openings this year. 

“The sector is recovering at a rapid pace, proving the UAE continues to grow in popularity amongst international travelers,” said Julia Simpson, WTTC president and chief executive. “The UAE is home to one of the world’s busiest and most successful airports, Dubai International, which acts as a gateway to the Middle East.”

The report further noted that in 2022, the sector contributed 60% of the country’s GDP with around $45.5 billion, equal to 9% of the UAE’s economy. The tourism sector also created more than 89,000 jobs in the past year. 

The report stated that 2022 saw the return of international travelers to the UAE, with India, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and the UK leading as source markets for international arrivals.

“The future for the sector looks positive. By the end of this year, the sector’s contribution will level that of 2019, and over the next decade, growth will outstrip the national GDP and create more than 114,000 new jobs, representing one in nine jobs,” said Simpson.

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