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Tourism, Friend Or Foe To The Economic Sustainability Of Developing Countries?


  • Sorina Costache

    () (Romanian American University)


In 1995, less than 500 million people traveled abroad. In 2011, 980 million people traveled to a foreign country. Tourism is one of the fastest growing sectors of the world economy and it is estimated that it grew at a rate of 4.4% in 2011. This paper examines the postulate that tourism is the answer for developing countries, in the form of eco-tourism. I will analyze the possible link between tourism and economic growth, in terms of trade. The United Nations Development Program’s Human Development Indicator Report for 2010 clearly shows that developing countries that have tourism-oriented economies still rank low according to their HDI. The academics voice concern over the fact that not only do their debt remains unpaid, but new loans are necessary in order to invest in tourism infrastructure. Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that the programs adopted cause more damage than positive effects. If tourism is to continue in this direction, developing countries will not only remain in the same poverty traps as until now, but their condition might worsen as their international debt will soar while their resources, their environment, as well as their population, will suffer tremendously.

Suggested Citation

  • Sorina Costache, 2012. "Tourism, Friend Or Foe To The Economic Sustainability Of Developing Countries?," Romanian Economic Business Review, Romanian-American University, vol. 7(2), pages 60-76, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:rau:journl:v:7:y:2012:i:2:p:60-76

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