The TSA project

Apart from being a new and especially relevant statistical instrument to analyse the economic importance of tourism, the development of a Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) is considered a strategic project for UNWTO. The document The Tourism Satellite Account (TSA): A strategic project for the World Tourism Organization summarizes the components of this strategy.

Within the TSA development process, it is essential to develop the System of Tourism Statistics (STS), in which National Tourism Administrations (NTAs) must play a key role. The document General guidelines for National Tourism Administrations (NTAs) relative to the development of the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) outlines the fundamental characteristics of this process as proposed by the UNWTO.

The UNWTO has prepared two documents explaining the content of the TSA:

  • Basic Concepts of the TSA, which is meant to explain to a wide audience what the TSA is;
     
  • an introductory course to the TSA, called TSA in depth: Analysing tourism as an economic activity. It draws on all the experience accumulated in the eight Regional Seminars that have been held to date, and makes use of the support materials developed for them. This course is aimed at both producers and users of tourism statistics, as well as researchers and university department members. The Iguazú Conference on “The Tourism Satellite Account (TSA): Understanding Tourism and Designing Strategies”, coorganized by UNWTO, Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, from 3 to 6 October 2005, was an opportunity to asses the actual level of development, analysis and application of the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) worldwide.

The Iguazú Conference on “The Tourism Satellite Account (TSA): Understanding Tourism and Designing Strategies”, coorganized by UNWTO, Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, from 3 to 6 October 2005, was an opportunity to asses the actual level of development, analysis and application of the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) worldwide.

The UNWTO believes that, with this level of participation, the Conference served as a valuable forum of exchange of experiences and helped to delineate a set of basic goals that should guide its programme of work in the coming years.

One of these goals relates with the fact that there is increasing misuse of the term TSA, at both the national and sub-national levels. As a consequence, there is an increasing need for the TSA brand to be protected. As there is also a consensus that the UNWTO should begin to disseminate TSA data, it is necessary to find the most practical way to request from countries (basically NTAs and CSOs) an assessment of the conformance of their TSA methods to the recommended methodological framework for TSAs (in effect, a brand validation approach).

It is understood that such an initiative is consistent not only with the specific function of the UNWTO within the United Nations System, as mentioned in Article 13 of the Agreement between the United Nations and the World Tourism Organization, but also with the responsibility derived form the application of the Principles Governing International Statistical Activities in the field of tourism statistics.

It has also prepared other types of contributions as part of its project: