Constraints of Business Tourism and Proposed Remedies: China-Pakistan Economic Corridor-Based View

Constraints of Business Tourism and Proposed Remedies: China-Pakistan Economic Corridor-Based View

Muhammad Waseem Bari (Lyallpur Business School, Government College University, Faisalabad, Pakistan) and Sadia Shaheen (Government College University, Faisalabad, Pakistan)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-3142-6.ch001


Business tourism is the oldest form of tourism in human history. Business tourism is based on four types of activities i.e. meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE). The inbound business tourism performs a significant role in the economic growth and development of any country. The objectives of this chapter are as follows. First, to highlight the key constraints of inbound business tourism in Pakistan. Second, possible and suitable remedies to resolve these constraints. Third, to explain the importance of inbound business tourism from the perspective of the China-Pakistan economic corridor (CPEC). The present chapter divides the constraints of business tourism in Pakistan into four levels, namely: state-level constraints, government level constraints, industrial level constraints, and individual-level constraints. This study proposes different remedies against different levels of constraints such as an establishment of an international platform of business tourism of Pakistan.
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After emerging the global village phenomenon, the world has been squeezed virtually (Pieterse, 2019). The information technology is providing global information at the doorsteps of the people. This global information brings the chances of business and career opportunities for this global village (Büyükbaykal, 2015). To seek these opportunities, the people travel to local and international destinations and stay over there as per their needs. In other words, digital information is a key driver of travel and tourism in the world. Last few decades, the tourism industry has been growing rapidly and information technology is playing a significant role in this regard (Del Chiappa & Baggio, 2015). The tourism industry has a significant share of revenue in the total GDP in many countries. For instance, in 2018, Macau, Maldives, Grenada, Fiji, and Jamacia had a contribution of travel and tourism to GDP 72.2%, 66.4%, 56.6, 38.9, and 34% respectively (Knoema, 2018).

Leiper (1979) treated tourism as a system that is based on different elements such as tourists, transit routes, destination regions, generating regions, and the tourist industry. Leiper defined the tourism as a system including the optional travel and transitory stay of people away from their typical place of living for at least one night, with the exception of visits made for the basic purpose of gaining remuneration from focuses on the way (Leiper, 1979; Park, Kim, Kim, & Park, 2019). The literature explains the different types and forms of tourism. The types of tourism include domestic tourism and international tourism, international tourism is further catagorised into inbound and outbound tourism (Boniface, Cooper, & Cooper, 2016). As explained in Figure 1, tourism has several forms and sub-forms such as leisure and business tourism.

The focus of the present study is business tourism and constraints of business tourism in Pakistan, especially considering the case of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Business tourism provides opportunities for interaction among entrepreneurs from different cultures and regions, and undoubtedly, business tourism, knowledge sharing, and innovation reciprocally support to each other (Ambler, Witzel, & Xi, 2016). Based on theories of interaction and networking (Pettenati & Cigognini, 2007), interaction among people of the same interests creates new knowledge, and new knowledge provides the base of innovation (Bari & Fanchen, 2017).

Prior to starting an in-depth discussion on business tourism, it is necessary to clarify the difference between business tourism and tourism business. The tourism business includes different sorts of business activities related to tourism such as transportation service, tour operator, accommodation, guided tours and tourist guide, hospitality, and destination management organization (Fess, 2019). On the other hand, business tourism has a different perspective. Swarbrooke & Horner (2012) referred to (Davidson, 1994) and defined business tourism as follows;

Business tourism is concerned with people traveling for purposes which are related to their work. As such it represents one of the oldest forms of tourism, man having traveled for this purpose of trade since very early times (Davidson, 1994).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Belt and Road Initiative (BRI): The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a strategy to develop global infrastructure introduced and adopted by P.R. China with a big investment in more than 152 states and international organizations of Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and America.

China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC): CPEC is a mixture of infrastructure-based projects which are presently under structure across Pakistan. Under the umbrella of CPEC, a big network of railways, highways, and energy plants is under construction. CPEC was started in May 2013 with the initial investment of 46 billion US $ by Chinese and Pakistani governments.

Inbound and Outbound Tourism: When a country or destination receives tourists, it refers to inbound tourism and when tourists of country travel to other countries/ destinations, it refers to outbound tourism for that country.

Religious Tourism: Religious tourism which is also denoted as faith tourism refers to a type of tourism where persons travel in groups or sometimes individually for missionary, pilgrimage, and internal (spiritual) leisure.

Business Tourism: Business tourism is specialized area of overall tourism. During business tour, the tourist not only performs different business-related activities but also receives financial benefits. There are four types of activities (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions) which are performed by a business tourist.

Tourism: Tourism refers to travel for the purpose of happiness or business. More generally, tourism denotes to outdoor activities during holidays at domestic and international levels.

Leisure Tourism: Leisure tourism refers to take a break from daily routine life. Leisure tourists usually enjoy beauty and nice hotels and resorts, enjoy atmosphere of beaches. The most popular activities of leisure tourism include social tours, cultural tours, religious tours, family tours, sports tours, and medical tours.

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