This chapter includes the following articles.
Selected by the current government as a pillar for growth, the tourism sector contributes more than 8% to national GDP and is the fourth-most-important source of foreign currency. With the exception of 2009, tourist arrivals have increased steadily from 22.9m in 2008 to 23.7m in 2013. Foreign exchange inflows generated by the sector also registered an increase of 8.5% in 2013, reaching a record $13.8bn, 3.4% higher than the previous record of $13.37bn in 2008. However, despite positive growth in the past few years, Mexico’s tourism sector has lost competitiveness in the international arena. A combination of internal insecurity and a deficient transportation network remain its most significant challenges. Nonetheless, with the current administration’s policies to diversify both the tourist offering and source markets, the sector should be able to regain some of the competitiveness lost in recent years and develop segments, such as cultural tourism, which until now have been underexploited. This chapter includes an interview with Claudia Ruiz Massieu, Minister of Tourism.