LATAM's tourism sector set to add $260 billion to the economy by 2034


The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), in collaboration with VFS Global, has revealed promising prospects for the Latin American (LATAM) Travel & Tourism sector.

According to the report, "Unlocking Opportunities for Travel & Tourism Growth in LATAM," the sector could add nearly US$260 billion to the region’s economy and create almost eight million new jobs over the next decade.

This potential growth is hinged on three key policy actions that could unlock annualized growth of 3.4%, bringing the sector's total contribution to nearly US$909.2 billion. The report emphasizes the importance of improving transport infrastructure, visa facilitation, and tourism marketing as central strategies for achieving this growth.

Travel & Tourism has proven to be a crucial sector in the region, contributing over US$629 billion to the economy in 2023 and attracting 86 million international travelers. The sector was also vital for employment, providing jobs to more than 24.6 million people, representing 9% of all employment in LATAM.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, highlighted the transformative impact of the Travel & Tourism sector in LATAM. "In recent years, it has grown significantly, contributing immensely to the region's economy. With the right policies, it could unlock an additional US$260 billion in the next decade," she stated. Simpson also called for better transport infrastructure, simplified visa processes, and effective marketing campaigns to showcase the region’s diverse destinations.

Zubin Karkaria, Founder and CEO of VFS Global, expressed enthusiasm about the partnership with WTTC. "Since establishing our presence in LATAM in 2009, we have become a trusted partner of 18 governments, serving 29 cities across 17 countries. VFS Global is committed to harnessing LATAM's potential by simplifying cross-border mobility through secure and innovative technology solutions," Karkaria said.

The report reflects on the historical challenges faced by the LATAM Travel & Tourism sector, from the Global Financial Crisis in 2008 to disease outbreaks and political instability. Despite these obstacles, the sector is on a robust path to recovery. Projections for 2024 suggest a record-breaking year, with a GDP contribution surpassing US$650 billion and the creation of an additional one million jobs, raising the total to 25.7 million.

To capitalize on these opportunities, the report underscores a strategic approach involving investments in infrastructure, enhanced air connectivity, and streamlined visa procedures. It also emphasizes the importance of protecting biodiversity and nature through improved water management and low-carbon energy usage, aiming to attract more tourists while ensuring environmental sustainability.

Leveraging digital technologies to enhance the travel experience and optimize marketing strategies is another critical focus. Investing in local communities and natural preservation not only enriches the visitor experience but also ensures that Travel & Tourism remains sustainable and inclusive. Additionally, maintaining high safety standards is essential for building trust and sustaining growth in the sector.

These comprehensive efforts aim to position LATAM as a competitive and appealing destination on the global stage, unlocking potential for environmental preservation, job creation, and significant economic development in the Travel & Tourism sector.

In collaboration with:

This site uses cookies from Google to deliver its services and to analyze traffic. Information about your use of this site is shared with Google. By using this site, you agree to its use of cookies.