Seychelles partners UNWTO to roll out Tourism Satellite Account

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The Indian Ocean Island has become the latest African country to begin the implementation of the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) after a successful launch.

TSA was designed by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) to support the development of quality core tourism statistics and indicators in each country and to strengthen the international comparability of tourism statistics. United Nations recognizes the World Tourism Organization as the appropriate body to collect, analyze, publish, standardize, and to improve the statistics of tourism, and to promote the integration of these statistics within the sphere of the United Nations system.

Since its inception in 2008, the world tourism body has been providing technical support to countries around the world, especially in Africa to adopt the TSA.

At the launch event for Seychelles on September 12, 2022, Regional Director for Africa at UNWTO, Elcia Grandcourt said, the TSA will help the Seychellois government track the performance of tourism in the economy.

Regional Director for Africa at UNWTO, Elcia Grandcourt

“The project at hand, which was initiated in 2019 with the Government of Seychelles with a focus on strengthening statistics systems and developing a Tourism Satellite Account, will certainly pave the way for a better understanding of the economic contribution of tourism and to track its performance and how it compares to other industries,” she said.

Elcia added that underpinning the significance of the TSA is helping governments make decisions based on ready data even in critical times.

She averred: “How best can we improve our policies and strategies in times of uncertainties and how can we better measure and manage our tourism sector in a sound and consistent manner?

“Reliable and up-to-date data is a huge part of the answer and a key factor in guiding strategic decisions and long term planning which are imperative to better measure, track and manage development. Access to data, compiling it and having the ability to analyze it gives us a clearer picture of what the future holds.”

Ms. Grandcourt maintained that strengthening of tourism statistics system is anchored as a core priority in The UNWTO Agenda for Africa – Tourism for Inclusive Growth.

“…and today the elaboration of a Tourism satellite account remains one of the top priority requests we receive from member states across Africa. We are therefore pleased for the milestone achieved with Seychelles with the launch of its TSA, which will serve as an example for other members in the region.”

An extension of the national accounts, the Tourism Satellite Account is compiled by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

“At NBS we have an array of publications that we compile and publish each year, and the Tourism Satellite Accounts will become an additional publication that focuses directly on tourism. It will really target this sector and stakeholders in the sector who require more precise information to make a decision,” said NBS’ CEO, Laura Ahtime.

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