1.1. and residence to another place called a

1.1.           
Background
to the study

Tourism essentially entails the
movement of people called tourists or visitors, from their habitual places of
work and residence to another place called a tourist destination, for the
purposes of business, leisure or other personal reasons; the activities they
pursue in the course of their stay in the destination, the range of facilities
and services available to cater for their needs, and for which the duration of  stay in the destination does not exceed one
year (UNWTO Glossary of
tourism terms, 2014).

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The contribution of tourism in the
social, cultural and economic welfare of a nation was formally articulated
during the Manila Declaration in October 1980, where tourism was acknowledged
as a tool that can help eliminate the widening economic disparities between industrialised
and developing nations (UNWTO: The Manila Declaration (1980). For many
economies in both the industrialised
and developing nations, tourism is a powerful tool for strong economic
performance, creating jobs and bringing about significant economic growth (World Travel and Tourism Council
(WTTC), 2017).

According to Matias, et al (2016) tourism generates a
substantial amount of revenue, through income spent by visitors in the demand
for tourists’ facilities and services such as accommodation, food and drink,
transportation, tours, excursions, air tickets, entertainment services,
currency exchange and a host of other assorted services.

According to The Telegraph Newspaper (2016), there are about
twenty economies, mostly island nations, whose economies are centred on tourism as the
principal source of revenue. The Maldives and Seychelles, are among the nations
that are heavily dependent on tourism for economic growth (The Telegraph,
2016).

According to the World Bank e-Library (2014), African is endowed with significant
tourism potential, which if properly harnessed and managed, would substantially
contribute in the invigoration and dramatic transformation of African
economies. In particular, tourism can contribute to significant economic growth,
by prompting the provision of infrastructure, the creation of employment,
increasing domestic consumption, stimulating tourism-related investment, fuels
the validation of national heritage, and fosters environmental preservation (World
Bank e-Library, 2014).

Tourism is now considered as a key
pillar in the strategic framework for inclusive and sustainable development in
Africa. Tourism can produce significant positive spillovers and positive
externalities, which can energise
the economy and foster growth (United Nations Trade and Development (UNCTAD,
2016).

According to World
Economic Forum (WEF, 2015), tourism contributes to approximately 9% of Africa’s
domestic product, while the sector has been forecasted to grow by almost 5% in
the next few years.

According to United Nations Office of Special
Advisor on Africa (OSAA, 2016), the African tourism sector is
experiencing progressive expansion. The continent now claims approximately 5%
of the number of global visitors and 3% of all tourism receipts. In 2014, the
travel and tourism GDP for Africa was up to $83 billion. The tourism sector
employs approximately 9 million people, making it one of the most prominent
sectors for employment in the continent (OSAA, 2016). 

During the last ten years, there had
been a gradual increase in the number of visitors to Cameroon. In 2006, the
number of tourists to Cameroon was 451.000, with a progressive increase in the
number of visitors in subsequent years, reaching 822.000 in 2014 (World Bank Data on tourist
arrivals, 2017).

According to World Travel and Tourism
Council (WTTC) tourism report for Cameroon, from 2007 to 2016, there had been a
progressive increase in tourism’s share of Cameroon’s GDP (WTTC, 2017). Thus,
this suggests a correlation between increase in tourist numbers, and the proportion
of Cameroon’s GDP generated by tourism.

The
WTTC 2017 report on the Economic impact of travel and tourism in Central Africa
Republic (Cameroon, Congo, Gabon etc.) show that in 2017 the direct
contribution of visitor exports amounted to 7.6 percent of total exports in
2016 and it is forecast to rise by 9.0 percent and grow by 2.6 percent per annum
from 2017-2027. Tourism & Tourism Investment in 2016 was 3.9 percent of
total investment and expected rise by 1.3 percent in 2017, and 4.6 percent
every year over the following 10years to a total of 3.5 percent (WTTC, 2017).

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