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Nearly 1.8 million tourists visit Sri Lanka in 2015

Nearly 1.8 million tourists visit Sri Lanka in 2015

Statistics released by Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) for the last year shows that nearly 1.8 million tourists visited the island in 2015.

According to SLTDA figures, Sri Lanka's tourist arrivals rose 15.4 percent in December last year compared to the same period in 2014 with the arrival of 206,114 tourists compared to the 178,672 arrived in December 2014.

In 2015 a total of 1,798,380 tourists arrived in the island recording a 17.8 percent increase from the 1,527,153 came during 2014.

Most of the tourist arrivals were from Western Europe with 552,442 tourists visiting in 2015 recording a 15.3 percent increase over corresponding 2014 figures. For the month of December 62,528 tourists arrived in the island, 11.9% more than in December 2014.

Arrivals from North America rose by 16.9 percent with 84,943 visitors last year while during the month of December arrivals rose 19.2 percent with 11,783 tourists arriving in the country.

Tourist arrivals from Eastern Europe declined in 2015 by 3.7 percent with the arrival of 148,458 visitors as arrivals from Russia declined by 11.3 percent due to the devaluation of the ruble and arrivals from Ukraine dropped by 20.2 percent.

Tourist arrivals from Middle East increased in the year by 13.6 percent with the arrival of 101,066 visitors.

Last year 362,857 East Asians arrived in the island, recording an increase of 29.4 percent. Number of Chinese tourists arriving in the island rose by 67.6 percent to reach 214,783. In December alone tourists arrivals from China increased by 52.3 percent with 15,843 Chinese tourists visiting the island.

Arrivals from South Asia, the other region from where most of the tourists come, increased by 24.1 percent to record 459,415 arrivals. Indian tourists contributed the most with 316,247 Indians visiting the country recording a 30.3 percent increase in numbers.

In the past year, 71,672 Australians arrived in the country, a 9.8 percent increase from the previous year.

According to Central Bank data earnings from tourism during the first ten months are estimated to have increased by 17.9 percent to US$ 2.305 billion in comparison to US$ 1.956 billion recorded during the corresponding period of 2014.

Courtesy : Department of Government Information

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