Sri Lanka tourist arrivals up 7.7-pct in March, Indian arrivals plunge

May 07, 2013 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s tourist arrivals rose 7.7 percent to 98,155 in March 2013 with strong growth from key Western markets and China, but arrivals from India plunged, official data shows. In the first two months of the year arrivals were up 10.9 percent to 288,798.

Arrivals from Western Europe, a key generating market for resort tourist rose 10.5 percent in March to 44.008 with UK rising 8.8 percent to 13,088, Germany up 16.3 percent to 9,145 and France up 7.0 percent to 6,973.

Netherlands rose 12.8 percent to 3,119, Sweden rose 2.1 percent to 2,390. After March the Western European market slows.

South Asian arrivals fell 6.7 percent to 19,261 with arrivals from India, Sri Lanka’s largest source of arrivals plunging 18.1 percent to 11,789.

Arrivals from India has been weak since the re-imposition of visas, but recent nationalist action by Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalitha and some others against Sri Lankan tourists had led to a disruption of two way traffic.

State-run SriLankan Airlines also slashed flights to Tamil Nadu.

Arrivals from Maldives rose 23.1 percent to 4,742 and visitors from Pakistan fell 5.1 percent to 1,695.

East Asian arrivals ros