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Global Tourism Clusters’ Investment & Job Growth Up 23% in 2022

Global Tourism Clusters’ Investment & Job Growth Up 23% in 2022

In a recent report published by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), it has been unveiled that the count of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) ventures within the tourism cluster surged by an impressive 23 percent. This remarkable increase is marked by a shift from 286 investments in 2021 to a substantial 352 investments in the year 2022.

The data presented in the report also highlights a significant surge in job creation within the tourism sector attributable to FDI. During this same timeframe, the estimated number of employment opportunities generated climbed by an equivalent 23 percent, reaching a remarkable figure of over 36,400 jobs, as per’s report.

Furthermore, the preceding year witnessed Western Europe emerging as the predominant destination region for tourism-related FDI projects, boasting a total of 143 declared investments, collectively valued at an impressive $2.2 billion.

The Asia-Pacific region also experienced a noteworthy uptick in announced FDI projects in 2022, showcasing a 2.4 percent growth rate, culminating in a total of 42 projects for the year.

Within the overarching tourism cluster, the hotel and tourism sector commanded a leading role, constituting nearly two-thirds of all projects spanning from 2018 to 2022. Furthermore, FDI endeavors in this sector underwent substantial expansion, manifesting a robust 25 percent increase from the preceding year.


UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili emphasized the imperative need for substantial investments in education and talent development. This includes upskilling the professional workforce and the implementation of vocational and technical programs. He stressed that, especially considering that only 50 percent of young individuals have completed secondary education, this approach is vital to ensure their success in the sector.

Jacopo Dettoni, the editor of FDI Intelligence, noted that FDI within the tourism sector is displaying signs of rejuvenation after facing near extinction during the pandemic years. He further emphasized that, with COVID-19 now behind us, the tourism industry must promptly address the most pressing challenge of our time: climate change and the vital call for sustainability.

UNWTO Executive Director Natalia Bayona added that UNWTO is placing heightened emphasis on innovation, education, and strategic investments as fundamental pillars to adapt to the ever-evolving market dynamics. She elaborated that UNWTO administers multiple initiatives aimed at providing the professional workforce with up-to-date skills through skills development and professional workforce programs. These initiatives, she stressed, foster high-quality job opportunities and lead to an increase in average wages across the entire tourism value chain.