Along with its cultural, leisure and recreational functions tourism contributes significantly (both directly and indirectly) to the world's economy and employment. It contributes to GDP even more than the automotive industry in all the regions throughout the globe: three times as much in Americas and two times as much in Europe, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council's 2013 research.
Concerning employment, 102 million of persons worldwide, or 3.3% of the world's total employed population, were involved directly in travel and tourism industry in 2013, which is almost as much as the population of Mexico.
Moreover, this figure is expected to grow to almost 200 million till 2035. In many countries tourism is the key source of jobs for their population. Thus, in Macau, one of the two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China, a half of population is employed in the travel and tourism sphere.