COLOMBO (EconomyNext) – Sri Lanka’s tourist arrivals rose 18 percent from a year earlier to 157,051 in March 2015, with Western European arrivals recovering after a lull during election in the island and China performing strongly, official data showed.
Total arrivals were up 13.6 percent from a year earlier to 478,838 in the first three months of the year.
Arrivals from China which surged in February to 27,425 during the Chinese New Year becoming the top generating market during the month, continued to grow strongly up 81 percent to 13,975.
In the first three months of 2015, Chinese arrivals were up 84 percent to 53,135 only second to India with 64,781.
Indian arrivals during March grew 16.6 percent from a year earlier to 21,838.
Growth in the Western European market which slowed to 11 percent in the peak winter season month of January amid Presidential elections in Sri Lanka recovered to grow 27.4 percent to 57,094 in March.
Arrivals from UK, traditionally Sri Lanka’s second largest generating market after India, grew 36.9 percent to 16,191 in March, just ahead of China, but total arrivals during the at 44,813 placed it at third place.
German visitors rose 22.9 percent to 15,294 with the quarterly total up 17.5 percent to 38,725.
Russian arrivals fell 20.6 percent to 7,106 and visitors from Ukraine fell 54.6 percent to1,502 due to continued economic woes in the countries.
Visitors from Japan fell 10.7 percent to 3,393 and from Malaysia 23.3 percent to 1,765.