International Tourism in the OIC Member Countries: Empowering Smart and Sustainable Tourism for Development 2024
Date: 31 May 2024

SESRIC launched the latest edition of its flagship report on tourism, titled “International Tourism in OIC Member Countries 2024: Empowering Smart and Sustainable Tourism for Development” during the 12th Islamic Conference of Tourism Ministers (ICTM), which was held on 31 May-2 June 2024 in Khiva, Republic of Uzbekistan. This report examines recent trends and developments in international tourism, offering insights into the industry's resilience, economic impacts, and future prospects by specifically focusing on OIC countries. Drawing from the report's main findings, H.E. Mrs. Zehra Zümrüt SELÇUK, Director General of SESRIC, addressed the Conference and provided an informed perspective on the dynamic landscape of tourism.

The report starts with a general overview of the current trends in the global tourism industry by investigating international tourism trends, economic impacts, and prospects. The report says that the global tourism industry has demonstrated remarkable resilience in the face of hardships. Global tourist arrivals have rebounded to 88% of pre-pandemic levels by 2023 and a full recovery in international tourism is expected by 2024. Despite the partial recovery in arrivals, international tourism receipts could reach only 73% of pre-pandemic levels or $1.1 trillion in 2022 as compared to $1.5 trillion in 2019.

On the other hand, the recovery of international tourist arrivals within the OIC countries has been relatively stronger, showcasing the sector’s resilience and potential for further growth and development. Hosting 224 million international tourists in 2022, the share of OIC countries in total international tourist arrivals increased from the pre-pandemic level of 12.8% in 2019 to 14.8% in 2022. Moreover, tourism receipts of OIC countries increased from USD 238 billion in 2019 to USD 257 billion in 2022, thus increasing its share in the world from around 14% to 21% in the same period. However, this path to recovery is not without challenges. According to the report, this necessitates a focus on infrastructural development and accessibility, particularly in remote areas, to accommodate diverse tourist preferences. Additionally, there is a need to enhance digital infrastructure and technological capabilities to align with global trends in smart tourism and promote sustainable tourism practices in OIC countries.

The report also reviews the issues related to smart and sustainable tourism development by assessing the latest advancements in digital transformation of tourism services in the world and elaborating on the smart tourism concept by focusing on smart destinations, travel facilitation and sustainability. A number of good practices are presented to demonstrate alternative perspective on implementation of smart tourism. Furthermore, the report reviews the major challenges and opportunities faced by OIC countries in promoting innovation and technology in the tourism sector, and highlights some recent initiatives of selected OIC countries in adopting smart, sustainable and digital tourism. The report concludes with some policy recommendations on how to promote innovation and technology adoption in tourism sector in OIC countries.

Online Electronic Version

  • International Tourism in the OIC Countries: Empowering Smart and Sustainable Tourism for Development 2024 (English) (Arabic) (French)