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UNWTO/GTERC Asia Tourism Trends

2019 Edition

The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) Criteria were created to provide a common understanding of sustainable tourism. The GSTC Destinations Criteria – known informally also as “GSTC-D” — are the minimum that any tourism destination should aspire to reach. They are organized around four main themes: sustainable management; socio-economic impacts; cultural impacts; and eIn the 6th year of publication the UNWTO/GTERC Asia Tourism Trends, 2019 Edition comprises four specific chapters. As in the past editions, chapter 1 is dedicated to international tourism trends in Asia and the Pacific in their global and regional dimensions, with an overview of the region’s socioeconomic environment.

Chapter 2 highlights the potential of the Chinese outbound tourism market, the largest in terms of numbers and expenditure in the world, to South America with special emphasis on Argentina and Brazil.

The third chapter focusses on health tourism in Asia, including both wellness and medical tourism that are of current interest and also form lucrative markets for both Asians, as well as international visitors.
The final chapter is related to sports tourism in Asia. While Asia has the potential to organize mega events to match those of the rest of the world such as the Summer Olympic Games which was held in China in 2008 with the 2020 event scheduled to be hosted by Japan, the chapter examines the role of sports tourism and its impact on Asian society especially in relation to the SDGs.nvironmental impacts. They have applicability to the entire tourism sector.

The GSTC Criteria have been developed and revised while striving to adhere to the Standard-Setting Code of the ISEAL Alliance, the body recognized to provide guidance on international norms for developing sustainability standards in all sectors. The most recent revision of the GSTC-D took place in 2019 and was based on two rounds of stakeholder consultation. Information on the development of the criteria and plans for future revisions are available on

UNWTO/GTERC Asia Tourism Trends


United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)






128 pages | 4.7 MB