The World Economic Forum’s 2017 Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report entailed the Travel and Tourism (T&T) Competitiveness Index, which ranked the tourism sectors of 136 countries according to 4 broad factors of competitiveness: Enabling Environment, T&T Policy and Enabling Conditions, Infrastructure, and Natural and Cultural Resources. These factors are organized into sub-indices, which are further divided into 14 pillars.
Globally, Lebanon ranked 96th of 136 with a score of 3.4/7 on the T&T Competitiveness Index, compared to 2015’s rank of 94th of 141 countries at an Index of 3.3/7.
It is noteworthy that the UAE led the Middle East T&T Competitiveness as it ranked 29th of 136 with a T&T Index of 4.49/7 in 2017.
Regionally, Lebanon ranked 9th out the 11 countries in the Middle East included in the study, while the UAE ranked first, qualifying as the most competitive in the region.
The tourism sector in Lebanon is one of the economy’s traditional growth drivers, alongside real estate and construction; however, the deterioration of its T&T Competitiveness and rank in 2017 can be partially attributed to the significant blow to the sector as a result of the Syrian crisis since 2011, and the continuous political deadlock along with the recurring security instabilities.
Lebanon’s Lowest T&T Sub-indices’ Scores v/s Regional Averages in 2017
Source: World Economic Forum