JAKARTA (ILO News): Tourism plays a key role in the economic development of Indonesia. Last year, the contribution of the tourism industry to the GDP was more than 3 per cent and the number of visitors to the country is also continuously growing, around 7 million foreign visitors in 2010 and more than 122 million domestic tourists in 2010.
In order to gain an understanding of the exact nature and scope of the tourism industries, tourist behaviour and consumption patterns, it is necessary to have in place an accurate, efficient and timely method of compilation and assessment of tourism statistics. Tourism offers a wide variety of types of occupation, from low-skilled, low-value-added to very high-skilled and very high-value-added. The tourism industries also attract top level managers specialised in hotel, catering and tourism-characteristic activities.
However, the employment in the tourism industries, in general, and the economic value of tourism in terms of employment, as a source of productive labour in particular, remain inadequately measured and insufficiently studied.
Taking into consideration the notable achievements of Indonesia in the development of national tourism statistics and production of data on employment in the tourism industries within the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) framework at different administrative levels, Indonesia had been selected as a pilot country for the Joint ILO/UNWTO project on measurement of employment and decent work in the tourism industry since last year. The project aimed to carry out an in-depth study on possible ways of applying the latest international recommendations in the field of tourism statistics to produce new sets of data on employment in the tourism industries beyond the TSA.
To better measure the employment in the tourism industry, the International Labour Organization (ILO), in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the National Statistic Agency, conducted a two-day national workshop from 24 – 25 May 2011. The workshop aimed to disseminate the result of the study and to formulate possible next steps in order to improve quality of the current data collection and possible collection of new data on employment.
“Tourism statistics play a key role in determining policy and planning through the determination of preferred products, marketing and promotion through the identification of source markets and so forth. Notably, tourism plays a crucial role in the creation of employment,” said Peter van Rooij, Country Director of the ILO in Indonesia.
The workshop discussed the challenges of moving from the traditional approach based on the economic side of employment (through the supplied and consumed tourism products) to its human or individual significance, i.e., to collect data not only on the number of full-equivalent jobs but also on the number of persons employed in tourism-characteristic jobs, the working conditions of persons engaged in tourism-characteristic activities (working hours, wages and salaries, education level) as well as their employment status in terms of whether they are salaried or self-employed workers.
The workshop identified key problems and challenges concerning the methodology and quality of data. It concluded, among others, that stronger coordination between the national and provincial level is necessary in setting the standard procedures of data collection. The workshop also highlighted the need for sensitizing the key stakeholders on the importance of collecting the right data as an effort to have better understanding on human significance in the tourism industry.
For further information please contact:
Mr Tendy Gunawan
National Programme Coordinator
Tel. +6221 3913112 ext. 142
Ms Gita Lingga
Media Relations Officer
Tel.: +6221 3913112 ext. 115