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Tourist arrivals down 5% in Dec

January 05 , 2014

Tourist arrivals down 5% in Dec

Tourist arrivals via air went down by 4.9 percent in December 2013 compared to figures of the same month last year.

A total of 42,601 international visitors entered the country via air during the month, according to Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) Immigration Office.

According to industry people, a series of issues like the Constituent Assembly (CA) election and strikes by anti-poll parties during the peak season, European Commission´s (EC) ban on Nepali airlines citing safety issues, runway problem at TIA, increase in number of air accidents, and lack of tourism promotion in international market due to the absence of CEO in Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) affected arrivals this year.

Though total arrivals went down in December, number of tourists from SAARC region increased by 1.6 percent to 13,521. Rise in arrivals from the SAARC region was mainly due to increment in the number of tourists from Bangladesh (40.3 percent) and Sri Lanka (49.4 percent). However, arrivals from India (1 percent) and Pakistan (67.2 percent) went down during the review month.

The Asian segment, other than SAARC region, showed negative growth by 3.1 percent, while arrivals from Europe went down by 8.7 percent. Similarly, tourist arrivals from the US fell by 6.1 percent.

According to NTB, the drop in number of tourist reflects the volatile nature of international tourist movement which is easily affected by factors such as the cost of traveling, situation at the destination country, global economic trends and traveling spirit of international visitors.