Israel-Gaza conflict will heavily impact Lebanon’s tourism industry

As tensions between Israel and Gaza spiral out of control, neighbouring Lebanon’s already weak economy will be heavily impacted due to the lack of tourism expected in the near future, according to American business magazine Forbes, November 6. 

Since October 7, 1,400 Israelis have been killed as well as over 10,000 Palestinians living in the besieged Gaza Strip. 

Multiple countries have warned their citizens not to travel to Lebanon and neighbouring countries amidst the conflict in the region. 

Last month, Germany and Canada’s Foreign Ministries urged their citizens not to travel to Lebanon whilst the UK government warned of traveling to the region in a warning statement on their website as well as calling on Brits in Lebanon to leave whilst commercial flights away remain available. 

Lebanon is heavily reliant on tourism and has more visitors amongst the world’s population than their neighbours Israel, Jordan, as well as Egypt. 

READ: Middle East Airlines will move several planes from Lebanon

It has been reported that should the country’s tourism revenue decrease from 10 to 30% then a GDP slash of 10% would occur. In the worst-case scenario, a 70% drop in tourism would result in a GDP drop of 23%. 

As the country is expected to be dragged into another conflict with Israel, similar to the 2006 war between the two states, it is without doubt that turmoil-stricken Lebanon is unprepared for it militarily and financially. 

Cross-border skirmishes have already taken place since the beginning of October resulting in 81 casualties of which 59 of those were Lebanese Shia militant organisation Hezbollah members. 

Regarding the inevitable lack of tourism in the region, ratings firm S&P Global commented, “It is important to emphasize the quite large share of visitors from the region and diaspora in total tourism arrivals, which should help shield the sector from a larger sector shock,”.  

Forbes 

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