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Counting the Cost
The tourism business
We look at the challenges facing the tourism industry in Egypt, the Philippines and London.
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2012 08:02

This week we are going to take you on holiday on Counting the Cost.

Tourism is the biggest service industry in the world and we are right in the middle of peak season. Between May and August - summer in the Northern Hemisphere - some 415 million tourists are expected to travel on their holidays.

The top five destinations last year, in terms of number of visitors were Italy with 46 million, Spain with 56,7 million, China with 57,6 million, and the US was second with over 62 million, and at the top of the list is France with 79,5 million visitors.

Down the other end of the scale though, the Middle East and North Africa took a massive hit because of the Arab Spring - losing about five million tourists last year.

But we are going to focus on Egypt where there are signs of a recovery.

The number of tourists jumped 29 per cent between January and May this year compared to the same period a year ago, when the revolution was still dominating the headlines.

Al Jazeera's Jacky Rowland looks at some of the efforts being made to bring tourists back to Egypt.

We also look at toursim in the Philippines, and how that ongoing dispute over the South China Sea is keeping Chinese tourists away.

And of course London - the Olympics are in town and there is a packet to be made, but why are these people leaving their homes during the Games?

Next week on a special edition of Counting the Cost: The cost of the 2012 London Olympics - When the last medal is handed out, will British taxpayers get the legacy they are paying for?

 
Watch each week at the following times GMT: Friday: 2230; Saturday: 0930; Sunday: 0330; Monday: 1630. Click here for more Counting the Cost.

Follow Kamahl Santamaria @KamahlAJE and business editor Abid Ali @abidoliverali

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Source:
Al Jazeera
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