June 24, 2011

Cambodia receives 1.19 mln foreign tourists in 5 months


PHNOM PENH, Jun 24, 2011 -- Cambodia has seen 13 percent growth in foreign tourists in the first five months of this year, compared to the same period a year ago, the statistics from the Ministry of Tourism showed on Friday.

From January to May this year, 1.19 million international tourists had visited Cambodia, 13 percent increase from 1.05 million visitors at the same period in 2010, it said.

Of the figure, 52 percent, or 624,363 visitors, traveled to Cambodia by air and the rest by land and water.

Kong Sophearak, deputy director of the ministry's statistics department, said Vietnamese visitors still rated first, following by South Korea and China.

"As now many airlines have connected flights to some provinces in China, Cambodia has optimism that more Chinese will spend their holidays in Cambodia," he said, adding the country sees China as a huge market for its tourism industry.

On June 12, the Xiamen Economic Daily reported that the Tonle Sap Airlines would launch direct flights for a Xiamen to Angkor Wat route from July 19, 2011; it would be the first direct flight from China's Fujian province to Cambodia.

Tourism industry is one of the main four pillars supporting Cambodian economy. In 2010, the sector received 2.5 million foreign tourists generating the total revenue of 1.75 billion U.S. dollars.

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