In a strategic Communication, the Commission examines how the implementation and development of the common visa policy could help growth in the EU by facilitating travel opportunities for third country nationals willing to visit the EU.
With a total of 18.8 million jobs in 2011, tourism has become one of the biggest generators of employment in the European Union and a key driver for economic growth and development. In 2011 foreign visitor spending amounted to €330.44 billion. According to recent estimations these figures are likely to increase up to 20.4 million jobs and €427.31 billion in 2022.
If fully exploited, the current visa rules could ensure that the EU remains an attractive destination for more tourists/third country nationals, while at the same time boosting EU's economic activity and job creation.