Sri Lanka tourist arrivals up 27-pct in October

Nov 19, 2013 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s tourist arrivals rose 27.9 percent to 102,805 in October 2013 from a year earlier, helped by surging arrivals from China, Maldives, India and Russia, official data showed. Middle Eastern arrivals were up 45.7 percent to 7,624, with visitors up to October up 12 percent to 49,250.

East Asian arrivals were up 31.3 percent to 14,668 in October led by China. Up to October China has generated 34,951 visitors up 85.7 percent.

Japanese visitors rose 49.9 percent to 2,605 and visitors from Malaysia were down 51 percent to 1,199.

Up to October arrivals were up 16.8 percent to 904,015.

D S Jayaweera, director general of Sri Lanka tourism development authority said last week arrivals would top a million in November.

Sri Lanka will have to draw about 296,000 visitors in November and December, or up 29 percent from a year earlier, to reach a targeted 1.2 million visitors for 2013.

Arrivals have been at or slightly above 26 percent over the past three months, and if the trend is maintained Sri Lanka would reach or come close to the target.

In 2012, arrivals grew 25 percent in November but only 15 percent in December, which is the peak month for Sr