13 May 2010

Sri Lanka Tourist Arrivals up 47pct in April 2010

10th May 2010, www.lbo.lk

Tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka rose 47.0 percent to 38,300 in April 2010 from a year earlier with strong growth in Western European and South Asian generating markets, data from the island's tourism office showed.

In the four months to April arrivals were up 49.7 percent to 198,709 from a year earlier. Sri Lanka has seen a revival in tourism after a 30-year war ended in May 2009.

In April arrivals from Western Europe rose 32.7 percent to 13,915 in the tail-end of the peak 'winter' season. UK sent 6,769 visitors in April, up 29.8 percent and Germany sent 2,116 tourists, up 13.2 percent.

Eastern Europe generated 2,146 tourists, up 53.6 percent with Russian arrivals up 11 percent to 875.

Arrivals from the Middle East were up 114.0 percent to 2,480, and East Asia up 44.3 percent to 4,065. China was down 1.2 percent to 660.

Visitors from South Asia were up 53 percent to 10,798. India generated 7,732 tourists, up 71.4 percent, Maldives 2,337, up 18.9 percent and Pakistan 560, up 73.9 percent.

Australia generated 2,197 visitors, up 40.3 percent.

Related Information:
An interim report of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (10th May 2010)
Sri Lanka has come first by recording the highest growth in tourist arrivals during the first two months of 2010. An interim report of the United Nations World Tourism Organization has listed Sri Lanka with a 50 percent growth in tourist arrivals among 77 countries that have reported international arrivals data so far. The report states that Sri Lanka outperformed 23 other countries with double-digit growth rates. Saudi Arabia was ranked second with Israel ranking 3rd, while Vietnam at the 4th place and Nepal fifth.

Colombo, Reuters (13th August 2009)
Sri Lanka's tourist arrivals jumped 28 percent in July from a year ago, its second straight rise since May last year due to the end of of a decades-long war, the Indian Ocean island nation's tourism board said on Thursday.

"This is mainly due to the peace situation in the country," S. Kalaiselvam, director general at the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority, told Reuters.

Overall arrivals in January-July fell 10.6 percent to 129,952 compared to 257,345 a year ago, mainly due to a drop in visitors from western Europe and south Asia.

But more visitors were coming, since January-June arrivals fell by 16.3 percent, data showed.

"We are confident of achieving at least similar to last year's figure and revenue. Our target is to get 2.5 million tourists and $2.5 billion revenue in 2016," Kalaiselvam said.

Sri Lanka's military declared victory over Tamil Tiger separatists in a 25-year war on May 18.

Sri Lanka received 438,475 visitors in 2008, a drop of 11.2 percent from a year earlier. Tourist revenue declined by 11.2 percent to $342 million as visitors stayed away because of intense fighting.

Sri Lanka is targeting half a million arrivals and $400 million in earnings in 2010. (Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Bryson Hull)

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