Tourism is a socio-economic pillar of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and the COVID-19 crisis risks devastating their economies. Tourism accounts for over 30% of total exports in the majority of SIDS, reaching as much as 80% in some. COVID-19 has hardly hit many SIDS, international tourists arrivals almost halved with during January–April 2020, and the road to recovery set to be long. This shock translates into a massive loss of jobs and a sharp decline in foreign exchange and tax revenues which curbs public spending capacity and ability to deploy the measures necessary to support livelihoods through the crisis. This UNWTO briefing note provides an overview of the importance of international tourist arrivals in SIDS and on the impact of COVID-19 in tourism in SIDS based on available data. It also presents examples of policies to mitigate the
impact, accelerate recovery, and build resilience by SIDS countries and key considerations in the way forward.
World Tourism Organization (2020), UNWTO Brieﬁng Note – Tourism and COVID-19, Issue 2. Tourism in SIDS – the challenge of sustaining livelihoods in times of COVID-19, UNWTO, Madrid, DOI: https://doi.org/10.18111/9789284421916.