Skift Take

While emerging economies in Asia and Africa will see the greatest business travel increase over the next decade, according to WTTC forecasts, the U.S. and China will remain the largest global business travel markets.

Despite the current climate of uncertainty surrounding business travel, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) projects that global business travel growth will chug along at a solid 3.7 percent yearly through 2027, according to a new white paper released in conjunction with Travelport.

Asia-Pacific is expected to drive global growth, with a 6.8 percent growth rate. China is expected to lead the world in growth with a 9.5 percent annual increase, followed by Myanmar (8.7 percent), Hong Kong (8 percent), Cambodia (7.4 percent) and India (7.2 percent).

“Travel and tourism generates $7.6 trillion in GDP and supports over 292 million jobs,” said WTTC president David Scowsill. “Business travel is a vital part of the sector, and it is a key catalyst for global growth. It drives the relationships, investments, supply chains and logistics that support international trade flows.”

While emerging markets are experiencing rapid growth, the largest business travel markets in the world are expected to remain the U.S., China, UK, Germany, and Japan, respectively, over the next decade.

The regions that have experienced the most business travel growth over the last five years are South Asia, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia.

Interesting, the share of business travel as an overall part of global travel is expected to reduce slightly as the line blurs between business and leisure trips.

“Global share of business travel is expected to dip slightly from 23.1 percent in 2016 to 22.4 percent in 2027,” reads the report. “As the nature of work changes with more contract or flexible labour, advances in automation and robotics moving people out of jobs, without intervention, increases in geopolitical volatility, strengthening protectionist and localisation policies may bring a slowdown to global trade, negatively impacting business travel.”

Here’s a breakdown of the countries expected to see the greatest business travel growth through 2027.

Business Travel Real Growth 2017-2027 % Share of Total T&T 2016 % Share of Total T&T 2017 Share Increase 2016-2027
China 9.5% 19.2 23.3 4.1
Myanmar 8.7% 39.9 46.1 6.2
Rwanda 8.5% 70.2 81.1 10.9
Gabon 8.5% 26 33.7 7.7
Greece 8.2% 6.7 9.7 3
Hong Kong 8% 16.1 18.8 2.7
Tanzania 7.9% 14.5 16.8 2.3
Cambodia 7.4% 15.1 16.2 1.1
Solomon Islands 7.3% 31.5 40.2 8.7
India 7.2% 5.4 5.4
World 3.7% 23.1 22.4 -.07

You can read the full report below.

Download (PDF, 6.24MB)


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Tags: business travel, wttc

Photo credit: China and Myanmar will experience strong business travel growth in the next decade. A mall in Shanghai is pictured here. hans-johnson / Flickr

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