Conclusion and future work

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This study has presented updated estimates of government revenue attributable to tourism as well as estimates of the portions due to domestic tourism and tourism exports covering the years 2003 to 2009. These estimates show the importance of tourism exports (as well as domestic tourism) in terms of their contribution to government revenue. Not surprisingly, given the decline in tourism exports over the last few years, the export contribution to government revenue has also declined. The study finds, however, that international visitors continue to contribute more (on a per dollar of spending basis) than residents.

Several issues remain for future studies of the government revenue attributable to tourism. In particular, the coverage could be expanded to give a more complete picture of government revenue. Estimates for the industry distribution of corporate income tax and taxes on unincorporated business income and of social insurance contributions by the self-employed could be improved. It may also be worthwhile to investigate the potential for estimating government revenue attributable to tourism on a quarterly basis for inclusion with the National Tourism Indicators.

Last, the study and this report have focussed on the importance of tourism on the revenue side of the government income and outlay accounts, but governments incur expenditures directly related to tourism as well. These expenditures cover items like subsidies to bus transportation, payments of employment insurance to persons with seasonal jobs in tourism industries, marketing efforts to promote tourism in Canada and abroad, management and maintenance of parks, historic sites, and museums, and so on. This would also be a worthwhile avenue to explore in future work.

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