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LDC export diversification, employment generation and the green economy: What roles for tourism linkages?

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  • Honeck, Dale

Abstract

Pro-poor tourism is arguably one of the best green options for addressing LDC poverty, employment and economic diversification initiatives. Although often neglected as a serious policy option - and consequently most of its potential still remains untapped - tourism is the leading export for at least 11 LDCs, and the 2nd or 3rd largest export for another 11 or more. It is also a major source of new employment, especially for women, youth and the rural poor in general. While difficult to measure accurately, tourism's pro-poor impacts are directly related to the achieved level of inter- and intra-sectoral linkages. Taking export diversification, employment generation and the green economy in turn, the working paper analyzes feasible LDC alternatives, reaching the conclusion (within the limits of data availability) that - in contrast with the current overemphasis on agriculture and manufacturing - green tourism is demonstrably one of the areas of greatest current comparative advantage and development potential for the majority of LDCs, via its extensive upstream and downstream linkages/multiplier effects, employment-generating and poverty alleviation capacities, opportunities for export test marketing of new products, sustainability, and largely untapped export opportunities. An economy wide, primarily private-sector approach is an essential element for maximizing tourism benefits - including its multiple linkages with agriculture and manufacturing - together with a significant coordinating governmental role to minimize negative externalities. Unfortunately, there is no automatic guarantee that expanding tourism will significantly increase poverty alleviation or local employment generation: the necessary mechanisms must be explicitly included in tourism planning and implementation.

Suggested Citation

  • Honeck, Dale, 2012. "LDC export diversification, employment generation and the green economy: What roles for tourism linkages?," WTO Staff Working Papers ERSD-2012-24, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:wtowps:ersd201224
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. John M. Piotrowski & Rabah Arezki & Reda Cherif, 2009. "Tourism Specialization and Economic Development; Evidence from the UNESCO World Heritage List," IMF Working Papers 09/176, International Monetary Fund.
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    5. Iza Lejarraga & Peter Walkenhorst, 2010. "On linkages and leakages: measuring the secondary effects of tourism," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(5), pages 417-421.
    6. Gootiiz, Batshur & Mattoo, Aaditya, 2009. "Services in Doha : what's on the table ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4903, The World Bank.
    7. Blake, Adam & Arbache, Jorge Saba & Sinclair, Thea & Teles, Vladimir Kuhl, 2010. "Tourism and poverty relief," Textos para discussão 237, FGV/EESP - Escola de Economia de São Paulo, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
    8. Olivier Cattaneo & Michael Engman & Sebastián Sáez & Robert M. Stern, 2010. "International Trade in Services : New Trends and Opportunities for Developing Countries," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2476, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Escaith, Hubert & Tamenu, Bekele, 2013. "Least-developed countries' trade during the super-cycle and the great trade collapse: Patterns and stylized facts," WTO Staff Working Papers ERSD-2013-12, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    LDCs; LDC Graduation; Export Diversification; Development; Comparative Advantage; Employment Generation; Green Economy; Green Tourism; Pro-poor Tourism; Tourism Linkages; Cluster Analysis; Value Chain Analysis; Poverty Alleviation; MDGs; Gender Issues; FDI; GATS; Africa; Istanbul Programme of Action (IPoA); Rio+20;

    JEL classification:

    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F18 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Environment
    • H54 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Infrastructures
    • H77 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • K39 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Other
    • L52 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Industrial Policy; Sectoral Planning Methods
    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism
    • O14 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Industrialization; Manufacturing and Service Industries; Choice of Technology
    • O19 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations
    • O24 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Trade Policy; Factor Movement; Foreign Exchange Policy
    • P45 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - International Linkages
    • Q26 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Recreational Aspects of Natural Resources
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth

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