INDIAN business travel looks set to continue in dramatic growth with spending forecasted to increase 9.8 per cent in 2015 and 10.9 per cent in 2016, the first year of double-digit spending gains since 2011, according to the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Foundation’s GBTA BTI Outlook – India report.
The report also showed Indian domestic business travel will hit double-digit growth in 2015 and 2016, growing 10.1 per cent and 11.3 per cent respectively.
However, international outbound travel from India is much more volatile, pressured downward by slower growth in China over the last few years. Outbound travel spending is expected to grow 7.9 per cent in 2015 and 7.3 per cent in 2016.
"India is poised for economic harmony as the region is strongly growing in the short term and is also in an excellent position for the long term," said Michael W McCormick, GBTA executive director and COO.
"If India continues on its current growth path, it will be a world leader in business travel for decades to come."
TR Ramachandran, GBTA group country manager India and South Asia, explained: "The combination of an aspirational middle class, positive government reforms and strong economic sentiment has resulted in an increased demand for business travel.
“The shift towards electronic payments is making it easier for companies to track travel expenditure and more convenient for employees to manage their spending when abroad and reconcile their expenses on return."
Meanwhile, India has announced a new tourism policy to be launched next month that will likely focus on various issues including tourism infrastructure, which has been a challenge to the industry, the report highlighted.