Yemen Observer: http://www.yobserver.com
Business & Economy
Written By: Yemen Observer Staff
Article Date: Jan 30, 2012 - 8:37:31 PM
Sheba Center for Strategic Studies issued in 2011 a study on “Tourism Investment In Yemeni Islands”.
The author of this study is Lubna Al-Mussaibili.
The study confirmed that Yemen has a strategic location in the southwestern corner of the Arabic Peninsula, overlooking the coastlines of the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean. Thus, it is one of the most strategic shipping lanes in the world; a lane that travels across the Red sea up to the Mediterranean, through the Indian Ocean and onto the Atlantic Ocean and the Arabian Gulf.
Interestingly, the Yemeni islands, apart from Socotra, which has received some basic services promoting tourism, have been deprived of development projects since 1990. They lack basic infrastructures and staples of life. This gives the impression that the government's attention towards the promotion of the tourist industry in those islands has not been translated to executive actions yet.
The problem which the study attempts to discuss can be couched in the following main question: How can tourism investments be launched and promoted in the Yemeni islands so that these islands can be, without harming their environment, amongst local and international tourist destinations lists and a strong competitor in the tourism industry?
This question gives rise to two secondary questions:
What are the components of tourism in the Yemeni islands and the tourism investment opportunities, and how can they be turned into tourist destinations? What are the major barriers to tourism investment in the Yemeni islands?
The significance of the paper is as follow:
First: the significance of tourism investments in the Yemeni islands stems from the strategic locations of these islands. Being neglected, they are going to be prone to foreign interests, piracy and other troubles.
Second: the significance of tourism investments stems from the significance of the tourist sector itself. This sector contributes to value-added that is not expected from other economic sectors such as trade, provides direct and indirect job opportunities, props up the balance of payments, and increases government revenues. Thus, tourism investments in the islands are going to be a main source for economic growth, or rather the main vehicle for development there, as it will create producing power for all sectors and promote their development, which in turn will reduce poverty and unemployment rates, improving the living standards of local inhabitants. Such development and improvement will not be restricted to the islands, but rather it will reach other areas in the country.
Third: the study will identify the barriers to tourism investments in the Yemeni islands and the means for promoting all national, Arab and foreign investments there.
As such, the paper seeks to achieve certain objectives, the most important of which are:
- To identify the components and elements of tourism investments in the islands and tourism investment opportunities, and how to make the islands a touristic destination.
- To identify the barriers preventing such investments.
- To come up with practical projections and recommendations that are of concern to those in charge of the tourist industry in Yemen.