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Mr. Julian T Chow
Belize’s tourism sector has witnessed impressive growth in recent years with overnight tourist arrivals registering double digit annual growth rates since 2016. To guide the development of the tourism sector from 2012 to 2030, the government endorsed a National Sustainable Tourism Master Plan in 2011, setting various initiatives and targets for the immediate and medium terms. Using a panel regression analysis on twelve Caribbean countries, this paper finds that accelerating structural reforms, fortifying governance frameworks, reducing crime, and mitigating the impact of natural disasters will help sustain tourism growth in Belize and contribute to economic well-being. This is in addition to tackling infrastructure bottlenecks and mitigating concerns relating to the “shared economy”.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This Selected Issues paper provides an overview of Belize’s tourism sector and main achievements and discusses the country’s comparative advantages and bottlenecks in tourism. It also analyzes the impact of structural and institutional reforms on tourist arrivals. The outturns in tourism have significantly exceeded targets set in the authorities’ National Sustainable Tourism Masterplan (NSTMP). The implementation of the NSTMP reforms has supported the tourism sector’s expansion. In order to guide the development of the tourism sector, the NSTMP 2011 proposes reforms and targets to propel Belize into an internationally recognized tourist destination by 2030. The emergence of the shared economy business model has also brought new challenges, in addition to opportunities. The benefits of the peer-to-peer accommodation available to customers on digital platforms include the expansion of tourism product, service, and sector offerings; improved access to market; and opportunities for income generation. It is imperative that reforms in the near term should focus on addressing the impact of recurring natural hazards, infrastructure bottlenecks, fortifying the institutional and governance framework, reducing crime, and mitigating concerns relating to the shared economy.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

outperformed the target. Cruise visitors grew by an average 7.5 percent per year (compounded annual rate). Although it has outperformed the target in terms of the number of visitors, cruise tourism expenditure seems to be falling short of target, reflecting either these tourists are not disembarking to visit onshore tourism sites or the lack of capacity in capturing these expenditures. Tourism Indicators Performance (In Compounded Annual Growth Rate) 7. The implementation of the NSTMP reforms has supported the tourism sector’s expansion . To guide the

Mr. Julian T Chow

). Since the launch of the NSTMP in 2011, overnight tourist arrivals grew at 10.1 percent per year, close to three times higher than the set target, precipitating growth in tourism expenditure of 10.7 percent per year which outperformed the target. Cruise visitors grew by an average 7.5 percent per year (compounded annual rate). Although it has outperformed the target in terms of the number of visitors, cruise tourism expenditure seems to be falling short of target, reflecting either these tourists are not disembarking to visit onshore tourism sites or the lack of