Tourism in India has generated USD 247.3 billion in 2018, with a growth of 6.7 per cent and accounting for 9.2 per cent of the total economy. Currently, it is the 8th largest country in terms of contribution to travel and tourism GDP and the largest market in South Asia. By 2029, Indian tourism sector is likely to grow at 6.7 per cent per annum to reach INR 35 trillion with 9.6 per cent of GDP, a FICCI-Yes Bank Report titled ‘India Inbound Tourism: Unlocking the Opportunities’ highlights.
The report further highlights that the tourism sector generated 26.7 million jobs in 2018. By 2029, the sector is expected to provide employment to nearly 53 million people, directly and indirectly. Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) crossed 10 million in 2017 and the growth trend is expected to continue. Consumption by domestic tourists remains the key strength of the sector in India, much stronger than the global average. Growing disposable income, increase in new millennial tourists, new travel destinations as well as new themes of tourism will further propel the growth.
The report also states that the systematic growth, maintenance and sustainable development of tourism destinations as well as focus on promoting the emerging avenues of tourism will be essential towards unlocking its true potential.
The growth in Indian travel and tourism sector has largely been driven by domestic tourists. Foreign tourists still account for a limited share as compared to some of the top-ranking countries. The government intends to achieve the ambitious target of 1 per cent foreign tourist arrivals in world’s international tourist arrivals by 2020 and increase it to 2 per cent by 2025.