Croatia Ranked 38th on Tourism and Travel Competitiveness Scale

Croatia is ranked 38th on the tourism and travel competitiveness scale of 124 countries compiled by the World Economic Forum (WEF).

The (WEF) praised Croatia's lenient visa regime, safety and good tourism infrastructure, notably a large number of rent-a-car businesses and POS devices accepting VISA credit cards. Human resources and education of tourism staff did not receive the same high grade.

Switzerland has the world's most conductive business climate for tourism, followed by Austria, Germany, and Iceland. The United States, Hong Kong, Canada, Singapore, Luxembourg and the United Kingdom completed the top ten of the 124 countries included in the WEF report.

WEF senior economist Jennifer Blanke said the report was no "beauty contest" or a reflection of the attractiveness of a country.

"On the contrary, we aim to measure the factors that make it attractive to develop the travel and tourism industry of individual countries," Blanke said.

The industrialized nations dominated the top rankings, and the least developed African countries brought up the rear with Chad at the bottom of the list. India and China ranked 65th and 71st respectively. Russia placed just ahead of China in 68th place.

It was the first time the WEF put together an index on travel and tourism, which has become a major part of the global economy. International tourism revenue was 6.23 trillion dollars in 2004.