Planning for the Effective Management and Sustainable Development of Coastal Resources in Caribbean Small Island States

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Klaus de Albuquerque
Jerome L. McElroy


International tourism is being touted around the globe as the gold mine of the 21st century. It has become the largest industry in the world, surpassing trade in oil and arms. Today, tourism involves some 500 million vistors spending US$3000 billion and supporting nearly 130 million jobs. It accounts for nearly 10 per cent of world trade and for one out of every 15 jobs. Tourism is even more significant in most Caribbean small-island states (SSIS). It represents a third of all trade, a fourth of foreign exchange earnings, and a fifth of all jobs. In a sample of 23 CSIS (defined as having a population of less than 500,000 people) the averate ratio of visitor spending to GDP was 64 per cent (de Albuquerque and McElroy 1992).

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