Taiwan climbs WEF travel and tourism rankings

Taiwan moved up two places to rank 30th among 136 economies surveyed in the latest Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report released April 6 by Switzerland-based World Economic Forum.

With a score of 4.5 out of 7, up 0.1 points from the previous survey, the nation finished seventh in the Asia-Pacific region, trailing Japan at No. 4, Hong Kong at No. 11, Singapore at No. 13, mainland China at No. 15, South Korea at No. 19 and Malaysia at No. 26. Spain, France and Germany topped the global list in that order for the second time.

Among the 14 pillars the survey used to gauge a country's travel and tourism competitiveness, Taiwan fared the best in ground and port infrastructure at No. 16, human resources and labor market at No. 19, cultural resources and business travel at No. 26, business environment at No. 27, and safety and security at No. 28.

Further breakdown of data reveal that, among the 90 indicators making up the index, Taiwan topped or tied for first in the world in terms of access to improved sanitation, lowest malaria incidence and mobile network coverage.

The country also finished No. 3 in openness of bilateral air service agreements, No. 4 in degree of customer orientation, No. 5 in extent of market dominance, No. 7 in automatic teller machine prevalence and No. 8 in primary education enrollment.

However, there remains room for improvement in several areas for Taiwan, which finished 123rd in particulate matter (2.5) concentration, 113th in presence of major car rental companies, 112th in ease of hiring foreign labor and 110th in travel and tourism government expenditure.

Involving a network of 141 partner institutions worldwide, the index is the seventh edition since its launch in 2007.

According to the survey, Taiwan's international tourist arrivals tripled from 3.52 million in 2006 to 10.44 million last year, with international tourism receipts doubling from US$5.12 billion to US$14.39 billion over the period.

Source: Taiwan Today