- France retains top spot
- Spain grows 13pc to finish narrowly behind
- JUSA slips to third place because of Trump slump
France will narrowly retain top spot after a recovery in tourism numbers in the second half of 2017.
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said total earnings in the tourism sector rose 12pc to €87bn last year.
Tourist numbers to the US dropped by five per cent in the first quarter and three per cent in the second quarter of 2017.
According to UNWTO data, 2017 was an exceptionally strong year for travel with international tourist arrivals up 8pc worldwide. Southern and Mediterranean grew 13pc. compared to 2016.
ForwardKeys, which predicts future global travel patterns by analysing 17m booking transactions a day, claimed in October that international air arrivals to America had dropped by 1.4 per cent between 27 January and 30 September 2017
ForwardKeys’ analysts said there was a correlation between the first travel ban, in which President Trump announced that those from certain Muslim majority countries should not be allowed to enter the United States, and the decline of international visitors to the US.
See also 'Irish tourism is not expected to recover to pre pandemic levels until 2026, behind other sectors'