Spending on business travel will only recover to
pre-pandemic levels in 2024, according to research released yesterday by the Global
Business Travel Association (GBTA).
In a webinar to announce the findings of its annual BTI
Outlook, based on research by Rockport Analytics, the association said that global annual
spend on business travel would recover to US$1.4 trillion by 2024, compared
with US$1.43 trillion spent in 2019.
However, 2024 will not mean recovery for every market. Rockport
principal Jon Gray said that Asia Pacific, driven
by China, would be at the head of the pack, with business travel recovering by
2023. He said that Europe and North America would only be at 75 to 85 per cent
of pre-pandemic spend by the same year.
The chart below shows the expected recovery in spend in various regions around the world between now and 2024.
Gray added, ”While corporations are well positioned
financially to resume investment in business travel, a full recovery will
require critical mass in global vaccination, implementation of health controls into
duty of care policy, favourable business traveller sentiment and a return to
open national trade policies.”
The association said yesterday that Covid's effect on business travel spend in 2020 was ten times worse than that of 9/11 or the 2008 global financial crisis.