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Hopes stay sunny for yearly tourist draw numbers

Tourists explore the Angkor Wat temple earlier this year in Siem Reap province.
Tourists explore the Angkor Wat temple earlier this year in Siem Reap province.

Hopes stay sunny for yearly tourist draw numbers

Foreign tourist arrivals to the Kingdom have gone up during the first nine months of this year, reaching roughly 3.9 million to represent a year-on-year increase of 11.5 percent, according to data released by the Ministry of Tourism yesterday.

Cambodia expects to attract a total of 5.5 million foreign tourists by the end of the year, which would be a 10 percent increase from last year’s total of 5 million, and to attract 7 million foreign visitors by the end of 2020, according to Kong Sopheareak, director of the Statistics and Information Department at the Ministry of Tourism.

“The growth of tourists is a good sign, and we project that we can reach 5.5 million people by the end of this year,” he said yesterday. “We need to improve our tourism products in order to attract more tourists to the country.”

More than 841,000 Chinese tourists have visited in 2017 so far, an increase of 45 percent compared with last year, making China the leading country in foreign visitors to the Kingdom. However Vietnamese tourists, while still the second-most common visitor to Cambodia, have decreased their travel to the Kingdom by 14.5 percent compared with the same period last year to number only 593,000.

Tourist arrivals by air, which account for about 61 percent of total foreign tourist arrivals, have increased by 25 percent to reach 2.4 million so far this year. Numbers of tourist arrivals by land and waterways have decreased by 4.5 percent to equal just 1.5 million.

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