Home » Business » ZIMBABWE REPORTS 16 PCT RISE IN TOURIST ARRIVALS IN Q1 2016

Zimbabwe recorded a 16 per cent jump in tourist arrivals in the first quarter of this year to 450,572, with visitors from Asia registering the highest growth, according to the latest data released here.

Asia, with 14,004 visitors, saw its tally jump 157 per cent compared with the same period last year but still trailed Europe and the Americas in overall numbers.

"Asia rose by a remarkably high margin of 157 per cent to 14,004 in 2016, compared with 5,441 in 2015," the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority said Tuesday. "The Asian region followed the growth pattern of the Americas, wherein all major markets grew significantly, except for Pakistan, which fell by 53 per cent."

Zimbabwe will next March host the inaugural Africa-China Tourism Conference as it targets boosting arrivals from Asia, which is the world's top source market for outbound tourists.

Zimbabwe has an overall plan to increase its tourist arrivals to five million from the current one million by year 2020, and boosting its annual revenue to 5.0 billion US dollars.

Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea were the top three Asian source markets in the period while the least arrivals were from Singapore.

The Americas recorded second highest increase in overseas source markets in the first three months of the year after arrivals into the country jumped 120 per cent to 22,620 while Europe was third with a modest 28 per cent increase taking its tally to 27,433.

"The major European countries Benelux, France, Germany Spain and Austria recorded increases except for Britain and Ireland which fell by 10 per cent," the ZTA said.

Despite political friction between Zimbabwe and the United States, arrivals from the US jumped 117 per cent to 19,475 during the period.

Africa, which is the perennial provider of the biggest number of tourists into Zimbabwe, recorded a marginal 11 per cent increase during the period to 343,644. The Middle East was almost flat after registering a one per cent increase while Ocenia, at -17 percent, was the only region to register a decline.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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