Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report

A Fiendishly Difficult Geo-Quiz

After mapping a number of the indicators found in the World Economic Forum’s Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report, I realized that the results could make a particularly challenging geo-quiz. Many of the results seemed surprising to me, and as a result I am not sure if I would have done very well on the quiz.

At any rate, I have included six world maps, all of which use a color scheme ranging from dark blue to dark red. On every map, blue shading indicated conditions favorable to tourism, the darker the better, whereas red indicates conditions disfavorable to tourism, the darker the shade, the worse the conditions. As the World Economic Forum’s report includes data for only 140 countries, many states are left in grey. I cannot vouch for the data quality, and I must note that one map, that of the “reliability of police service,” is based on highly subjective survey data.

The maps, labeled A though F,  show the following features.

1. Reliability of Police Services (“To what extent can police services be relied upon to enforce law and order in your country?”)

2. Hotel Rooms (Number of hotel rooms per 100 population, 2011 or most recent)

3. Broadband Internet Subscribers (Fixed broadband Internet subscriptions per 100 population, 2011 or most recent)

4. Sports Stadiums (Sports stadium capacity per million population, 2011 or most recent)

5. ATMs Accepting Visa Cards (Number of automated teller machines (ATMs) accepting Visa credit cards per million population, 2012 or most recent)

6. Road Traffic Accidents (Estimated deaths due to road traffic accidents per 100,000 population, 2007 or most recent)

See if you can match the map letters with the answer numbers, and post your responses if you would like in the comment section of the blog.






Map EmF Map F

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Egypt and the World Diesel Price Map

World Diesel Price MapThe price of fuel in Egypt, and especially that of diesel, has been featured in many recent news stories, owing to the perilous state of the Egyptian economy. As an April 1 article in Financial Times notes:

Egypt imports up to 70 per cent of its diesel, which it uses to fuel cars, farm equipment and power plants. In addition, it subsidises diesel to the tune of at least $1.5bn a month, draining the country’s already perilously low hard currency reserves. A spate of shortages in recent weeks has raised questions about Egypt’s ability to keep the lights on, feed its people and prop up its moribund economy in the coming months.

But Egypt is not the only country that subsidizes diesel. In fact, at US$ 0.32 per liter, diesel is expensive in Egypt compared to what it costs in some other countries. In Venezuela, Iran and Saudi Arabia, the corresponding figures are $0.013, $0.016 and $0.067 respectively. Those three countries, or course, are major oil exporters, unlike Egypt. Egypt is now a net importer of oil, although it does have abundant natural gas deposits. In no other net oil importer is the price of diesel even close to that found in Egypt. Although Sri Lanka appears on the map in the same color as Egypt, its diesel price is as at 0.66 US$ per liter.

As can be seen on the map, based on data from the World Economic Forum’s Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report, diesel is generally expensive in the major industrialized countries and inexpensive in the major oil exporters. Oil-exporting Norway, however, has the world’s second highest price level, exceeded only by that of Turkey. Canada and especially the United States stand out for their relatively low prices. Prices vary greatly in Latin America and especially sub-Saharan Africa, which reflect governmental subsidies more than anything else.

I would like to post a world map of natural-gas prices, but I have not yet been able to find one, or the data necessary to construct my own.


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