The World Economic Forum’s Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report 2008 (TTCR) highlights the competitive advantages and disadvantages in Pakistan’s tourism and reinforces the importance of Environmental Sustainability.
The World Economic Forum's Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report 2008 provides a cross-country analysis of the drivers of competitiveness in travel and tourism, providing useful comparative information for making business decisions and additional value to governments wishing to improve their travel and tourism environments.
Pakistan has been ranked at 103 out of 124 countries around the world, underlining a frail Travel & Tourism regulatory framework, low prioritization of the industry by the Government, low effectiveness of marketing and branding and a constricted tourism perception. Some of the other competitive disadvantages for Pakistan include the poor tourism infrastructure such as provision of competitive hotel rooms (110), available ATMs accepting Visa cards (110), the national and cultural resources (96) and the prevailing security situation (106) among 124 countries.
Despite showing many competitive disadvantages in the Travel & Tourism industry, Pakistan ranked well on the air (40) and ground transport infrastructure (39). The price competitiveness in the industry maintains a very viable position based on the low fuel price level (23), purchasing power parity (25) and the extent and effect of taxation (33). Pakistan will however, like many other countries need to focus on the sustainability of its natural environment.The data for Pakistan has been prepared based on a combination of data from publicly available sources, international Travel & Tourism institutions and experts as well as the results of the Executive Opinion Survey, which was carried out last year by the Competitiveness Support Fund (CSF) in Pakistan.
Arthur Bayhan, Chief Executive Officer of the Competitiveness Support Fund (CSF) shared that CSF, being the partner institution of the WEF in Pakistan, is deeply engaged in the issues of competitiveness and is working with both the public and private sector as well as the academia in Pakistan to improve the global ranking of the country. Bayhan shared that the Executive Opinion Survey is a major component of The Global Competitiveness Report, which is published each year by the WEF. The survey provides the key component that turns the report into a representative annual measure of Pakistan’s economic environment and its ability to achieve sustained growth. Top level business executives operating in Pakistan are surveyed to capture their opinion on the business environment in which they operate.
CSF further shared that it is currently working on preparing the second State of Pakistan’s Competitiveness Report for 2007-08. This report is a deeper reflection of the Global Competitiveness Report and will provide a snapshot of the strengths and weaknesses along with key positive and negative trends in the national economy, as well as regional competitiveness trends in each of the provinces.
The report elaborates that Switzerland, Austria and Germany have been ranked as the most attractive environments for developing the travel and tourism industry. The report helps Pakistan in measuring the factors that contribute to developing the T&T industry and also demonstrates the importance of supportive business and regulatory frameworks, coupled with world-class transport and tourism infrastructure with a strong focus on developing human and natural resources.
The Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI) measures the factors and policies that make it attractive to develop the T&T sector in the various countries. It is composed of 14 pillars of travel and tourism competitiveness: 1. Policy rules and regulations, 2. Environmental sustainability, 3. Safety & Security, 4. Health & hygiene, 5. Prioritization of travel and tourism, 6. Air transport infrastructure, 7. Ground transport infrastructure, 8. Tourism infrastructure, 9. Information and Communication technology (ICT) infrastructure, 10. Price competitiveness, 11. Human capital, 12. Affinity for travel and tourism, 13. Natural resources, 14. Cultural resources
The Competitiveness Support Fund is a joint initiative of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Ministry of Finance, Government of Pakistan to reposition Pakistan’s economy on a more competitive global footing.
Support for CSF is part of the $ 1.5 billion in aid that the US Government is providing to Pakistan over five years to improve economic growth, education, health and governance.