The world’s top 10 fastest growing tourism cities are all in Asia, according to new data from the World Travel and Tourism Council. The city of Chongqing in southwest China tops the list on the latest study, with 14 percent growth per year. e other cities on the top 10 growth list are Guangzhou, Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu, Manila, Delhi, Shenzhen, Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta.
The Council’s latest “City Travel and Tourism Impact” report shows that Asian cities will be at the forefront of tourism growth over the next decade, and that’s especially true for those in China. The city of Chongqing in southwest China tops the list on the latest study, with 14 percent growth per year. That’s closely followed by Guangzhou at 13.1 percent.
“The strong Chinese domestic market is behind the growth of cities such as Chongqing and Guangzhou which rely on spend from Chinese nationals for 94.5 percent and 89.1 percent of their Travel & Tourism GDP respectively,” the report said.
Shanghai also shows growth at 12.8 percent, while China’s capital city of Beijing is at 12 percent per year.
“The two-digit growth that we see here in this part of the world is very impressive,” Gloria Guevara, president and CEO of the World Travel and Tourism Council told CNBC’s “The Rundown.” “China is good not only as a sourcing market for some other countries, but also their domestic traveling is huge,” she added.
The other cities on the top ten list are Chengdu in China (11.2 percent), Manila in the Philippines (10.9 percent), Delhi in India (10.8 percent), Shenzhen in China (10.7 percent), Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia (10.1 percent) and Jakarta in Indonesia (10 percent).
The study covers a total of 65 cities, chosen for being among the top ranked for arrivals, and spending by visitors. Twenty-one of those cities are in Asia Pacific.
About 138 million inbound trips were made into China in 2016, a 3.5 percent rise over the same period of the previous year, according to the China National Tourism Administration.
“The Chinese tourism sector is experiencing an amazing boom,” Jim Qian, group global partner and senior vice president at Chinese conglomerate Fosun, told CNBC’s “Street Signs.” “The number of middle class population in China has increased tremendously. In 2002, the middle class population percentage was 4 percent. Since then, it’s increased to 31 percent,” he added.
China is also home to some of the world’s largest travel and tourism cities. Shanghai has the largest tourism and travel GDP contribution in the world, at $30.2 billion. It also accounts for 11 percent of China’s total travel and tourism GDP contribution.
“The dominance of the Chinese market is clear — both in terms of future growth and overall size and as a main source market for destinations in the wider Asia Pacific region,” the report said.
The report also found other pockets of growth in Asia, such as Singapore. Singapore’s travel and tourism doubled over the past 10 years to a total of $12.4 billion in 2016, the report said, noting that the industry supports 164,000 jobs in the island nation.