The body expects "a strong summer" because it believes the sector will start its recovery "at the end of March
The revival of tourism could lead to the recovery of more than 100 million jobs in the sector, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).
The agency says that "a strong summer is expected" because "the sector will begin its recovery from the end of March and many major companies have reported a significant increase in bookings".
So, while during the pandemic the WTTC warned that more than 174 million tourism jobs were at risk, in its latest analysis it predicts that up to 111 million jobs could be reactivated, in its most optimistic scenario. This would still be 17 per cent less than in 2019, or 54 million fewer jobs.
To achieve this positive scenario, widespread vaccination programmes, testing and tracking processes and strong and continuous international coordination of the public and private sectors are needed.
On the other hand, the more conservative forecast forecasts a return of 84 million jobs, 25 per cent below 2019 levels, with 82 million fewer jobs.
This scenario predicts that recovery will come in the second half of 2021, due to a more gradual launch of vaccines that would slow down the removal of travel barriers and restrictions, while reducing travel demand and consumer confidence.
"Hope on the horizon"
"We are expecting a strong summer for the tourism sector, thanks to a combination of mask use, the launch of global vaccination and exit tests that open the door to international travel once again," explained WTTC President Gloria Guevara.
"Our latest research supports this and shows that there is definitely hope on the horizon for the global travel and tourism sector next year, with the possible recovery of up to 111 million jobs," she added.