Sustainable Destination Management
Strategies in the OIC Member Countries
Research seems to be lagging behind in the case of the OIC MDTCs, with the exception of
corridors supported by international or regional organizations. In general, tourist arrivals for
corridor countries is collected by countries and can be gathered through the use of national
and UNWTO platforms. In the case of the Silk Road, UNWTO provided support for the research
and analysis of travel trends for the Silk Road. In 2015, the TripAdvisor, an affiliate member of
UNWTO, prepared a Travel Trends Guide for the Silk Road based on researching Silk Road
countries on the travel website. UNWTO also launched the Uzbekistan Tourism Insight report
in cooperation with Uzbektourism and Monash University based on data collected by tourism
students, which showed that 81% of tourists were interested in Uzbekistan due to its
connection with the Silk Road.
In terms of enabling infrastructure essential for establishing MDTCs, specifically road and
transport networks, existing transport infrastructure networks among the OIC countries are
relatively weak. Many OIC countries, with limited financial resources, face constraints in
investing in infrastructure and transport networks. As investments in the service sector in
developing countries are considered high risk, financing for tourism projects is proving quite
difficult for poorer OIC countries.
Railway transport can facilitate tourism by improving mobility. In 2016, the OIC countries' rail
network density per million people was 68.8 km of total rail lines, a decrease from 74.3 km in
2006. This is markedly less than non-OIC developing countries (111.7 km) and the world
average (160.2 km) in 2016. The number of air passengers in the OIC countries was estimated
at 517 million in 2016, representing 14% of the world total air passengers, which constitutes
478% from 2002.
Figure 21: OIC Countries Rail and Trail Connectivity
Source: SESRIC (2018)
UNWTO. 2016. Silk Road Action Plan 2016 / 2017.
The Statistical, Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries (SESRIC). 2017. International
Tourism in the OIC Countries: Prospects and Challenges.
SESRIC. 2018. Prospects and Challenges of OIC Member Countries: SWOT Outlook 2018.