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International Handbook on the Economics of Tourism

Edited by Larry Dwyer and Peter Forsyth

This highly accessible and comprehensive Handbook presents a cutting edge discussion of the state of tourism economics and its likely directions in future research. Leading researchers in the field explore a wide range of topics including: demand and forecasting, supply, transport, taxation and infrastructure, evaluation and application for policy-making. Each chapter includes a discussion of its relevance and importance to the tourism economics literature, an overview of its main contributions and themes, a critical evaluation of existing literature and an outline of issues for further conceptual and applied research.
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Chapter 12: Public Sector Investment in Tourism Infrastructure

Marcia Sakai


Marcia Sakai Introduction Tourism infrastructure is foundational for tourism development, second in importance only to a destination’s attraction resource base, because infrastructure is vital to the commerce of tourism. Infrastructure increases the efficiency of privately producing and distributing tourism services, and in certain cases, such as tourism enclaves or remote destinations, makes possible the supply of tourism services. Tourists travel to destinations in other countries or to other regions within their own country, thus making passenger transportation infrastructure a key element. Whether travel is by land, air or sea, the supporting airport and harbor transportation nodes, as well as railway, road, bridge and tunnel networks, are required. Tourists also add to the effective population of a destination, requiring the same basic services that are ordinarily consumed by residents. The demand for infrastructure services of water supply and waste disposal, communication and electricity is thereby increased. Infrastructure has also been defined to include public safety, mail and freight services, medical systems, financial systems, education systems, national defense and other services that support both resident and tourism demand, such as retail and shopping (Ritchie and Crouch 2005). In the current discussion, infrastructure is defined as capital-intensive, long-lived physical assets that provide benefits to the general public or to promote economic development (US Department of Transportation 1993; Gramlich 1994, p. 1177). The provision of tourism infrastructure is of particular importance in the long-term environment of tourism growth. Expanded facilities are needed to accommodate anticipated growth and to maintain a...

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