Sri Lanka tourist arrivals up 29.6-pct in August

Sept 12, 2011 (LBO) – Tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka rose 29.6 percent in August to 72,463 from a year earlier, with arrival in the first eight months up 35.2 percent to 537,787 data from the state tourism promotion agency showed. Visitors from Western Europe rose 17.8 percent to 30,053 with visitors growing 27.8 percent to 207,596 to August, accounting for 38 percent of all visitors so far this year.

UK the largest generating market was flat at 12,486 barely up from 12,413 a year earlier.

But arrivals from Germany were up 23.3 percent to 4,814, visitors from France were up 42.4 percent to 4,166 and from Italy up 22.5 percent to 1,771.

Eastern Europe showed an increase of 23.3 percent to 2,496.

Visitors from the Middle East doubled to 5,150, growing 101 percent from a year earlier.

East Asian visitors rose 48.0 percent to 9,963 but Chinese arrivals fell 2.4 percent to 1,071.

But Japanese visitors rose 49.6 percent to 2,938 and Malaysian visitors rose 49.9 percent to 1,568. Visitors from Singapore rose 36.8 percent to 1,297.

Visitors from South Asia rose 33.8 percent to 16,136 in August, with the total so far rising 44 percent to 146,349.

Visitors from India rose 38.9 percent to 12,857