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ASEAN For Business - Developing Sustainable Tourism in a POST-COVID-19 ASEAN


The tourism sector is a significant contributor to the ASEAN Economy. Before the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. The travel and tourism industry generated approximately 12,1% of ASEAN’s combined GDP and provided jobs to 42 million ASEAN people. Nonetheless, international tourist arrivals plummeted by more than 80%, and tourism revenue dropped by 75% during the pandemic. After the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the end of the pandemic in May 2023, the number of international tourists going to ASEAN has steadily increased.


The region saw a 153,09% year-on-year increase in international arrivals based on the preliminary figures of 2023. According to the UN Tourism (formerly the United Nations World Tourism Organization or UNWTO), the Asia-Pacific region has witnessed a noteworthy recovery, reaching 65% of its pre-pandemic tourism levels following the reopening of numerous markets and destinations. This recovery indicates the potential within the ASEAN region to cater to the changing demands of post-pandemic travellers.


As the tourism sector rebounds from the pandemic, ASEAN is determined to “build forward better”, strengthen the industry’s long-term resilience and make it more sustainable.



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ASEAN for Business Bulletin - February 2024
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