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Kerala records highest growth rate in tourism arrivals in 2019

According to the stats released by the Kerala Tourism, the state has attracted around 1.96 crore domestic and foreign visitors in 2019, registering a healthy growth of 17.2 per cent.

Published: 06th March 2020 09:17 PM  |   Last Updated: 06th March 2020 09:17 PM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Amid the looming threat of Corona which has turned upside down the prospects of the tourism sector, the Kerala Tourism has some reasons to cheer. After the worst flood in a century in 2018 which saw the tourist arrivals plummeting to a new low, the year 2019 saw the highest growth rate in domestic and total tourist arrivals in 24 years.

According to the stats released by the Kerala Tourism, the state has attracted around 1.96 crore domestic and foreign visitors in 2019, registering a healthy growth of 17.2 per cent as compared to the figures in the previous year. However, the growth in foreign tourist arrival is 8.52 per cent against the 0.42 registered in the previous year. The total earnings from tourism stood at Rs 45,010.69 crore, notching a robust 24.14 per cent increase.

The total number of tourists was pegged at 1,95,74,004, comprising 1,83,84,233 domestic tourists and 11,89,771 visitors from abroad. In 2018, the number of tourists visiting Kerala was 1,67,01,068 (domestic tourists 1,56,04,661 and foreign tourists 10,96,407).  The growth rate in the inflow of domestic tourists was 17.81 per cent while it was 8.52 per cent for the foreign tourist arrivals.

Also, the total foreign exchange earnings (FEE) from tourism crossed Rs 10,000 crore for the first time, touching a figure of Rs 10,271.06 crore and registering a growth of 17.19 per cent over the previous year. Ernakulam alone generated Rs 4,508.32 crore of the FEE, accounting for 43.9 per cent of the total foreign exchange earnings from tourism sector. It was followed by Thiruvananthapuram (Rs 2,680.06 crore) and Alappuzha (Rs 1,003.37 crore).

In terms of total revenue earned from the tourism sector, Ernakulam ranked No. 1 with Rs 12,816.54 crore, followed by Thiruvananthapuram (Rs 8,700.12 crore), Thrissur (Rs 4,646.08 crore) and Idukki (Rs 3,984.4 crore). “We have bounced back with great vigour after suffering unprecedented floods and torrential rains for two consecutive years in 2018 and 2019. This is the highest growth rate since 1996. Our figures show that there was a very significant increase in the footfalls from May 2019 and it prevailed till the end of the year,” Kerala Tourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran said.

The minister said the state was optimistic about sustaining the growth momentum this year also but it will depend on how quickly the world finds a solution to the problem of Coronavirus outbreak.



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