Spain will close 2019 with a new record of 83.7 million international tourists

Expenditure has increased to 92.337 million euros, also the biggest data in history

Spain will close 2019 with a new record of 83.7 million international tourists, a figure that represents an increase of 1.2% higher than that registered in 2018 that was 82.8 million and represents a new record in this indicator, has advanced This Monday the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, Reyes Maroto.

Tourism spending for the whole of 2019 would be close to 92,337 million euros, 2.9% higher than in 2018, which also represents a new historical record.

«This means strengthening Spain’s commitment to greater profitability and quality of destination, one of the objectives set out in the General Guidelines of the Sustainable Tourism Strategy 2030,» said the minister at a press conference held at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism in which he showed his stisfaction for the strength of the sector.

Maroto especially highlighted the increase this year from distant markets as well as the United States that have partly offset the fall of other traditional markets such as the United Kingdom and Germany. «We have to look for new profiles of tourists with greater purchasing power,» said the minister, ensuring that more and more vacation tourism is being sought more and more.

Spain has again broken its record of tourist arrivals this year, despite the uncertainties produced by the procès ruling in Catalonia or the bankruptcy of tour operator Thomas Cook, which brought millions of travelers to our country, especially English.

With this Spain accumulates seven consecutive years of record foreign visitors. In Maroto’s opinion, the 2019 data show the strength of the Spanish tourism model in the face of national and international uncertainty despite the pessimism installed in some sectors. «That is why the Government faces the year 2020 with optimism, because we have a strong and consolidated sector, capable of facing the challenges that this year has for us,» said the minister.

The Government insists on the objective of maintaining Spain’s position as a world leader through its commitment to profitability, digitalization and sustainability as central axes of tourism policy.

«Spain has extraordinary strengths, the quality of infrastructure, climate, security and the competitive business fabric, capable of responding to the demands of tourists who visit us,» he explained.

In addition, the sector continues to be an employment engine, with 75,000 new jobs created this year and a total of 2.4 million affiliates, representing 12.4% of the total national economy.

The minister has also expressed satisfaction with the data on tourist flows in international passenger air transport. According to AENA data, in the global 2019, 94.5 million international travelers were reached, which represents 3.5% more than in 2018, «the highest figure in the historical series».

FORECASTS FOR 2020

Looking ahead to 2020, the diversification of destinations will be one of the objectives, «to attract passengers from other markets and not depend so much on the consolidated markets.» The challenge is to be able to seasonally adjust the flows and that the passengers are distributed throughout the year.

Maroto insisted on the need for a regulatory framework to address «phenomena such as housing for tourist use, defining a framework that guarantees fair competition.»

During the act on Monday, the minister has advanced part of her agenda for Fitur, which begins this week, and has said that the Government’s objective in this international forum of the sector «is to strengthen our leadership and strengthen the diversification of markets.»

Another objective is to promote participatory governance mechanisms by promoting networking and for this purpose, it will hold meetings with the representatives of the autonomous communities and a new meeting of the Spanish Tourism Council (Conestur) will be convened.

The minister also announced that the possibility of Spain hosting a world tourism summit after the success achieved with COP 25 is being studied, and that the Government will make a firm commitment to improve intermodality since connectivity is one of the strengths of our tourism.

The minister insisted that, despite what many believe, the Spanish tourism market «has not reached a ceiling» although it is recognized that the focus on quality has now been the tourist model. «There is still room to grow, we can grow a lot by offering a wide variety of tourism products,» he insisted, adding that quality is the hallmark of the Spanish tourism offer.