PM Modi hails India's jump to 40th spot in tourism rankings

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"The increasing importance of demand from emerging markets and technology are changing the travel and tourism sector's landscape at a fast rate".

India's ranking in the Travel and Tourism Competitive Index of World Economic Forum moved from 65rd position to 52nd position in 2015.

Spain came first in the ranking followed by France, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States.

"To further enhance its competitiveness, the government could further prioritise the travel and tourism industry, and invest in the development of its cultural resources and business travel, while addressing environmental sustainability and preserving its handsome natural environment", it said.

Taiwan jumped two spots from the 2015 rankings to 30 this year, and rated high in ground and port infrastructure (16th), human resources and labor market (19th), global openness (23rd), cultural resources and business travel (26th), and business environment (27th).

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India is one of the countries that improved the most as it gained 12 places in Asia, but lagged behind its other Asian peers like Japan and China which were ranked way ahead at 4th and 13th place, respectively.

The World Economic Forum has, for the past 11 years, engaged leaders in travel and tourism to carry out an in-depth analysis of the Travel and Tourism competitiveness of 136 economies across the world. "To reach their potential, the majority of countries still have more to do, from enhancing security, promoting their cultural heritage, building their infrastructure and creating stronger visa policies", WEF Community Lead of the Aviation, Travel and Tourism Industries Tiffany Misrahi said.

"Great news for tourism sector. The capacity of countries to respond to and embrace these structural shifts will determine the future success of destinations", said Roberto Crotti, economist, WEF.

The country is ranked eighth in the Middle East, up from 12th, the report published on the official WEF website on Thursday said.

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