Kerala

Kerala expects 5-10% increase in tourist footfall in 2019

Thiruvananthapuram: After recovering from devastating floods last year, Kerala is expecting 5-10 per cent increase in tourists’ arrival in 2019 and its revenue from the sector is expected to grow by about 3-6 per cent in the current year, an official said here on Tuesday.

The state’s tourism sector suffered an estimated loss of Rs 2,000 crore in the last year on account of deadly floods that wreaked havoc in the southern state, state tourism department’s Deputy Director Muraleedharan P. said.

“Of the total estimated loss, Rs 1,500 crore was lost due to cancellation of bookings and hoteliers and resorts’ owners incurred losses to the tune of Rs 500 crore on account of damages,” he said.

“Kerala has recovered from the devastating floods. This year, we are expecting 5-10 per cent increase in footfall of both domestic and international tourists,” he said on the sidelines of a ‘partnership meet’ in the city.

Overall, 1.67 crore of international and domestic tourists visited the southern state last year.

“Revenue from the state tourism was at Rs 36,528 crore in 2018 and we are hoping to clock a 3-6 per cent increase in revenue this year,” he said.

Among foreign tourists who visited last year, maximum of them came from the UK, followed by the US and France, he said.

He said the state has been pursuing a five-year target of doubling the arrival of foreign tourists and 50 per cent increase in domestic tourists by 2021.

Tourism currently contributes about 10 per cent to the gross domestic product of the southern state, he said, adding that the share of tourism would increase further in coming years.

IANS

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