Published: 07 Mar 2013 09:15 GMT+01:00 | Print version
Updated: 07 Mar 2013 09:15 GMT+01:00
Switzerland is number one in the world for the competitiveness of its tourism industry, according to a new report by the World Economic Forum.
The only negative was Switzerland’s high prices.
Tages-Anzeiger commented that the result was surprising given the problems associated with the strong franc.
It’s the fifth time in succession that Switzerland has topped the biennial ‘Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report’.
Switzerland Tourism said in a response it was "delighted" with Switzerland's number one ranking.
"This is one of several studies proving that Switzerland as a tourist destination is in many ways uniquely attractive," speaker Daniela Bär told The Local.
Germany and Austria came next in the ranking of 140 countries, judged according to their attractiveness and ability to develop their travel and tourism industries.
The report highlights the potential of the tourism industry to boost economic resilience and job creation.
But it warns that environmental sustainability remains a key concern for the future.
There was “considerable movement in the index’s top 10 countries” in 2013, according to a summary of the findings.
France fell four places from third in 2011 to seventh this year while Spain climbed to fourth from eighth.
Also showing strong improvement were the United Kingdom – up two places to fifth – and Canada, up one place to eighth.
Switzerland and Germany retained their respective positions.
Switzerland performed well in almost all aspects of the index, WEF said.
The country’s infrastructure, especially ground transport, was among the best in the world. And it boasted top marks for its hotels and other tourist facilities, with “excellent staff”.
Other attractions for tourists were the richness of natural resources, good environmental conditions, high safety and security.
“Switzerland’s strong performance in all these areas enables the country to somewhat make up for its lack of price competitiveness (139th),” the report said.
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