Crimea: Regional System of Tourism Statistics (STS)
UNWTO has extended its technical cooperation with UNDP and the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (ARC) for the development of its regional system of tourism statistics (STS). Under this joint UNWTO-UNDP programme, an evaluation mission was fielded in 2011 to conduct a technical analysis of the STS in the ARC, TSA feasibility and provide recommendations of upgrading ARC’s tourism data and statistics. A second mission was conducted by UNWTO in October 2012 as a follow up to the first mission to assess new developments in the tourism sector and the progress made since the previous mission. A wide range of consultations were held with national and regional authorities in Kiev and Simferopol, the European Commission and the private sector. Tourism is an important sector for the local economy in the ARC, providing a significant source of incomes for local businesses and employment. ARC has witnessed considerable growth in the sector with a high influx of visitors from diverse markets. However, official data and statistics have not kept pace with these changes and local authorities require robust information systems to measure the economic and social impacts of tourism. The main issues discussed centred on the implementation of the original recommendations made to upgrade expenditure data through visitor survey development; improving estimations for the growing informal sector; establishing joint working groups of regional and national stakeholders and developing databases. As part of the re-evaluation, it was observed that good progress has been made by the authorities in several areas. Based on the further assessment made, a number of new recommendations were made to further enhance the data requirements for key areas with the commissioning of new sample surveys. A proposal has been formulated for the extension of technical assistance for the period of 2013-14.