Oman’s travel and tourism numbers have witnessed strong growth rate. The industry’s contribution to the GDP is expected to rise by 10.2% at OMR 1.08 billion in 2014.
The direct contribution of the tourism industry to Oman’s GDP in 2013 was OMR982.8 m. The average growth in direct contribution of tourism to GDP in the Middle East region is forecast to touch 5.5%, while world average growth is expected to be 4.3% in 2014. According to the annual 2014 report of World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the travel and tourism industry in Oman supported 37,000 jobs directly in 2013 and this is expected to grow by 11.4% in 2014 to 41,000 jobs. This is among the strongest growth worldwide and the fastest growth in the Middle East region.
“This includes employment by hotels, travel agents, airlines and other passenger transportation services,” the report says. By 2024, in Oman, travel and tourism will account for 60,000 jobs directly, an increase of 3.9% per annum over the next 10 years, says the report.
According to National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI), there has been an 11% increase in revenue for four- and five-star hotels across Oman in the year 2013, against 2012 figures. The combined 2013 revenues of the 31 hotels included in the statistics registered OMR149.3 m, compared with OMR134.5 m in 2012, registering a year-on-year growth rate of 11%. Five-star hotels contributed a bigger portion of the revenue with OMR102.2 m, while four-star hotels posted revenue of OMR47.1 m in 2013. The Business Monitor International, meanwhile, forecasts a 24% increase in tourist arrivals over the 2014-2018 period, to 1.35 m.
“Over the same period, we forecast total tourism receipts to increase from US$1.78 bn in 2014 to US$2.27 bn in 2018, an increase of 27.5%. This will reflect higher spending per capita, as well as an overall rise in tourist numbers,” the agency says.