The tourism industry continued its significant contribution to the country's economic growth with a share of 14.9 per cent last year as compared to 10.4 per cent in 2005.
In a statement, chief Statistician Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said the figure showed an upward trend since 2005 and was growing rapidly with an average annual growth rate of 11.2 per cent over the past twelve years.
The direct contribution of the tourism industry to the nation's gross domestic product last year recorded 6.1 per cent with a value of RM82.6 billion compared to RM76.6 billion in 2016, he said.
He said foreign tourist arrivals dropped to 25.9 million last year from 26.8 million in 2016.
The number of domestic visitors increased from 189.3 million in 2016 to 205.4 million in 2017, he said adding that Selangor was the most visited state by number of tourists.
According to Mohd Uzir, shopping remained as the largest component of tourism product with a value of RM26.8 in 2017, followed by accommodation and transportation which recorded RM20.7 billion and RM15 billion respectively.
He said as for total employees involved in the tourism sector, the number also increased to 3.4 million in 2017 from 1.5 million in 2005.
Mohd Uzir said retail trade continued to be the largest contributor to the national economy with a share of 44.8 per cent and posted a double digit growth of 12.4 per cent in 2017 as compared to 10.5 per cent in the previous year.
He said this was followed by food and beverage serving service with 16.3 per cent and accommodation with 12.8 per cent.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK