Sri Lanka tourist arrivals up 26-pct in May

COLOMBO (EconomyNext) – Sri Lanka’s tourist arrivals rose 26 percent from a year earlier to 113,529 in May 2015, driven by blistering growth from China and India, data from the state tourist promotion agency showed.

In the five months to May, arrivals rose 14.5 percent to 714.584.

South Asian visitors rose 28 percent to 33,141 with Indian arrivals up 38.2 percent to 31,764. In the five months to May Indian visitors were up 26.8 percent to 119,593.

Visitors from Maldives were up 11 percent to 6,705, from Bangladesh up 17.9 percent to 1,013. But Pakistani tourists were down 8.1 percent to 2,586. South Asian visitors rose 18 percent to 172,255.

East Asian visitors were up 33.1 percent to 23,710 with Chinese tourists growing a blistering 71 percent to 12,173. China is now the second largest source of tourists to Sri Lanka after India at 79,098 visitors in the first five months, up 80 percent from a year earlier.

Japanese visitors rose 1.7 percent to 2,319 and Malaysian visitors rose 23.7 percent to 2,147.

Western European arrivals rose 25 percent to 24,497 with UK tourists up 15 percent to 7,954 and Germany up 41 percent to 6,265.

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