Tourism, terrorism and political violence in Tunisia: Evidence from Markov-switching models
This study investigates the impact of terrorist attacks and political violence on the number of tourist arrivals and overnight stays in Tunisia. The dataset employed consists of monthly data that covers the period from January 2000 to September 2016, which includes several political and terrorist attacks in Tunisia and the region. Empirically, we investigate the true data generating process (DGP) of these two proxies of tourism activity by accounting for four statistical properties that characterize these series: (1) seasonality, (2) unit roots, (3) breaks, and (4) long memory behavior. Our empirical findings show strong evidence of stationarity, five breaks in the tourist arrival time series and spurious long memory behavior. By estimating a 3-state Markov switching model consisting of the mean, trend, and variance, we find that the Tunisian Jasmine revolution and two recent terrorist attacks, one at the Bardo National Museum on March 18, 2015 and the other at the tourist resort at Port El Kantaoui, Sousse on June 26, 2015, played an important role in influencing the tourism activity of the country. Our empirical findings show also that local shocks have a more important impact than international shocks in influencing tourism activity. Interestingly, we find that the effects of terrorist shocks have a long duration compared to political violence shocks. Several security, marketing, and economic policies have been proposed and discussed in the paper.
- Finance & Economics [93 items ]