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May tourist arrivals rise

Jun 5, 2010 12:11:11 PM - itnnews.lk

Sri Lanka’s tourist arrivals jumped by 42.3 percent in May compared to a year earlier, boosted by the end of the country’s 25-year civil war.

Arrivals have risen for 12 straight months since the end of the war in May last year, and were up 31.2 percent in the June 2009-May 2010 period compared to a year earlier.

The hotel and travel index on the Colombo Stock Exchange has almost tripled since the war’s end, outpacing the rise in the overall stock index, which has more than doubled since then.

Tourism is one of the main foreign exchange earners of the economy along with remittances, garments, and tea. The revenue from tourism was 350 million US Dollars in 2009.

Earnings from tourism jumped 68.8 percent in the first four months of this year to 174.9 million US Dollars. This is revealed in the Central Bank’s latest data. Sri Lanka is targeting 2.5 million arrivals and two Billion Dollars in earnings by 2016.