Swiss tourism expected to continue declining in 2009-10


GENEVA – Swiss tourism was expected to continue to decline amidst the gloomy world economy in 2010 but a rebound was likely in 2011, economic research institute BAK Basel Economics reported Monday.

In its statement, BAK Basel Economics expected the Swiss tourism sector to contract overall, with a 5.1 percent decrease in foreign visitors and a 1.9 percent decrease in domestic tourism.

The Basel-based company predicted a 3.7 percent drop in overnight hotel stays from November to April 2010.

Swiss tourism started to decline during the 2008-2009 tourist season, with hotel stays down by 5.7 percent, the sharpest decline since the Second World War, according to BAK Basel Economics.

Revenues from ski lifts increased by 0.1 percent during the 2009 tourism season, a fact unlikely to be repeated in the coming year.

A stable recovery wasn’t expected until the end of 2010, the statement said.

BAK Basel Economics predicted that Swiss tourism prospects will be more favorable in the medium term, with an increase in demand of 1.9 percent in 2011. The number of overnight hotel stays was expected to increase by 3.9 percent in the 2012 tourist season due to a 5.8 percent uptick in the number of foreign visitors.