ECONOMYNEXT – The Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) anticipates revenue of 2 billion US dollars in 2023 with more Chinese tourists expected to arrive in the coming months.
“The number of Chinese tourists in Sri Lanka is picking up and will increase in the coming months,” SLTDA Priyantha Fernando said. “This year, Sri Lanka has welcomed 13, 771 Chinese tourists so far.”
Tourists to Sri Lanka this year have primarily comprised Russians and Indians with a few visitors from the UK and Australia and other countries making up the rest. China currently occupies the sixth place in terms of tourist arrivals but SLTDA expects this to change.
From January to May 2023, Sri Lanka has welcomed 503,000 tourists in total, an improvement from the 719,978 that arrived in all of 2022. The island nation, still recovering from its worst currency crisis in decades, had originally targeted earnings of 1,550,000 US dollars from tourism for 2023, but it now projects up to 2,000,000 by the end of the year.
A tourist is expected to spend 185 to 195 dollars per day in Sri Lanka.
“Many Chinese tourists bring in a lot of foreign currency due to their spending on shopping and their investment in gemstones” said Fernnado.
However, Fernando acknowledged that the markets for Chinese tourists is varied.
“We receive tourists with mixed spending habits,” he said. “While some of them bring a lot of foreign currency into the local market, there are some who spend less, although it is a little less than or around the average 185-195 dollars a day.” (Colombo/May27/2023)