International Travel: Economic Effects of Government Intervention
Brady, Adam; Thomas, Whitney; Wilkin, Jenna; Eliason, Patty; Rugh, Susan
Because tourism affects many aspects of a countries economy, governments play an important role in promoting and preparing their countries for tourism. Using Haiti and China, as well as the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and the epidemic outbreaks of SARS and the Swine Flu, we can see the role each government takes in regards to tourism and the economy of each country. In Haiti, we see the role America plays in rebuilding the country, both physically, after the earthquake in January 2010, and politically, by offering support to the Haitian government and stopping military coups. Tourism would bring money to Haiti and help strengthen the country. The People’s Republic of China had a history of only allowing select visitors into the country until the late 1970’s, when Chinese officials realized the economic benefits of tourism. The government then poured money into building new hotels, renovating historical sites, and training tour guides. Then, in 2001, China won the bid for the 2008 Summer Olympics and spent billions of dollars preparing for the huge influx of visitors, hoping to change the world’s view of The People’s Republic of China. After the terrorist attacks on American on Sept 11, 2001, world travel drastically decreased. Since then international travel has increased worldwide, but has actually decreased to the United States. The U.S. government, knowing the economic advantages of tourism, passed the Travel Promotion Act in March 2010, hoping to promote international travel to the United States. The outbreak of SARS and the Swine Flu created tension between government policies. As governments attempt to limit the spread of disease by issuing warnings and, in some cases, forbidding travel, while at the same time trying to limit the negative economic effects of restricting travel. By January2004, less than a year after governments implemented travel restrictions due to SARS, they gave tourist officials the push to promote international travel once more. International travel is an important part of the world economy and each country takes steps to reduce their negative image in order to promote travel to their country.