Saturday, 12 October 2013 00:00
By Cheranka Mendis
Tourist arrivals fell to 89,761 in the month of September, falling from the third highest figure of 100,224 in the previous month though year-on-year there has been a growth of 26%.
According to Sri Lanka Tourism data released yesterday, September saw 18,048 Indians coming into the country, 30% more than in September 2012, followed by 9,070 from the UK (5.6%) and 6,732 (36.2%) from Germany. Also on the top five are Maldives and China marking arrivals of 4,977 (34.5%) and 4,847 (81.2%) respectively.
Negative growth were seen from South Africa of 41.7%, Finland by 39.8%, Taiwan by 18.1%, Switzerland by 15.6%, New Zealand by 12.8% and Malaysia by 11.3% during the month.
Data released by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority yesterday showed arrivals topping 801,210 during the first nine months of the year, a 15.5% increase from the period a year ago.
Regionally, Western Europe holds the lead with 26,598 tourists coming in with a growth of 19.1% over the same month of the previous year.
Arrivals from South Asia was 26,399 (31.8%) while East Asia recorded 14,704 (37%), Eastern Europe 6,646, Middle East 5,695, Australasia 5,410 and North America 3,831.
Sri Lanka hosted 350 and 128 tourists from Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean respectively during the month.
When assessing percentage wise growth for the month, the largest growth was seen from Indonesia, which noted 422% despite the total arrivals number being 736. This was followed by Sweden which recorded a growth of 294% and Philippines with 178.7%
The top 10 markets as at end of September shows India holding the title as Sri Lanka’s biggest tourist market for yet another month with 131,589, followed by traditional markets UK and Germany with 90,714 and 59,950 respectively. Also in the top 10 are France (46,807), Middle East (41,626), Maldives (40,267), Australia (35,814), China (29,153), USA (24,801) and Japan (23,401).