Analyzing the Bidirectional Relationship between Tourism Growth and Economic Development

Ene 24, 2022

After having demonstrated the relationship between tourism and economic growth, tourism-led economic growth (TLGH), and economic-driven tourism growth (EDTG), the scientific literature was concerned with studying the relationship between tourism and economic development, limiting itself to analyzing a possible unidirectional relationship between tourism, economic growth, and economic development.

In this context, the aim of this article is to determine if the relationship between tourism and economic development is bidirectional given that, although tourism can be a tool for economic development, it is also true that a higher level of economic development influences tourism growth. Using a sample of 143 countries, and applying confirmatory factor analysis together with a structural equations model, the bidirectional relationship is confirmed.

Therefore, although tourism growth and economic development face different challenges, if public policies work in a coordinated manner, they may contribute significantly to improving economic development in countries that are configured as tourist destinations.