Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Access to tourism sector statistics made easier

The Department of Tourism in the Ministry of Environment this past week launched the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) intended to link the tourism statistics with the National Account Statistics.

Giving insight of the TSA in the capital Gaborone, David McEwen, United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Consultant said a special feature of the TSA is to measure tourism from the demand side and from the supply side and ensure that there is reconciliation between demand and supply

“The TSA gives the economic context for the plethora of tourism statistics that are collected by different organisations. The statistics are collected in order to assist economic decisions whether by the Government or by the private sector with the aim that economic decision-making will be improved,” said McEwen.

The TSA process estimates that the contribution of tourism expenditure produces a Tourism Direct Gross Value Added of 4.9 per cent of total gross value added in the Botswana Economy.

This estimate he said, relies primarily upon international tourism; the count of tourist arrivals at the border posts, the estimates of length of stay and expenditure per day/night from the visitor sample surveys.

“Domestic tourism, which at present is an extrapolation from the last relevant household survey in 2009/2010; a technical exercise using the updated Social Accounting Matrix (SAM) and converting it into a Symmetric Input Output Table (SIOT) estimates an indirect multiplier of 1.53. So the Direct + Indirect Impact on the Botswana Economy of tourism spending in the economy is a gross value added (GVA) of 7.6 per cent contribution to total GVA in the Botswana economy in 2016.”

As a way forward, McEwen said Botswana continually aims to improve its tourism statistics. Ongoing initiatives include: Improvements in the inbound international visitor surveys; capacity building for the Supply and Use Tables for the National Accounts; a New Domestic Tourism Survey ÔÇô Households; piloting the link of ‘natural capital’ of the protected areas with the TSA (WAVES project) as well as giving consideration to the development of the TSA in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals and targets for SDGs eight and 12. UNWTO are working on these issues.

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