Sri Lanka’s tourism sector outperforms broader economy

A steep rise in visitor numbers to Sri Lanka is driving growth in the country’s tourism industry, though a slowdown in the Chinese economy and problems in Russia could take the edge off the surge of arrivals later in the year.

According to the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), travel and tourism in Sri Lanka has outperformed the wider economy, making it a smaller country “hotspot” for growth in 2014 and outpacing large, fast-growing markets like China, India, Indonesia and Turkey in percentage terms.

According to data issued by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority in early April, arrivals from overseas rose 13.6% year-on-year (y-o-y) in the January-March period to just under 479,000. Significantly, the rate of increase accelerated as the quarter progressed, from 6.6% in January to 16.7% in February and 18% in March.

The first-quarter results appear to put Sri Lanka well on track to surpass the 1.52m visitors recorded in 2014 and achieve the government’s target of 2m visitors for the year.

Read more at Oxford Business Group

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