CYPRUS TOURIST ARRIVALS STILL ON THE INCREASE

Cyprus is still seeing an increase in tourist arrivals into the country and revenues from tourism, according to Cyprus’ Tourism Organisation (CTO) President Alekos Orountiotis.

Orountiotis stated that the total tourist arrivals in Cyprus for 2012 saw an increase between 3.5 percent and 4 percent when compared with those from 2011. Also correlated with this growth was an increase in the revenue from tourism when compared with the previous year.

According to the statistical service, tourist arrivals to Cyprus have been following an upward trend since May based on a year-on-year analysis.  For the period between January and September 2012 tourist arrivals reached 2,064,118 compared to 1,974,147 during the same period in 2011, marking a 4.6 per cent increase. Last month recorded a 10.2 percent increase from 304,260 arrivals in September 2011 to 335,352 in September 2012. The UK remains Cyprus’ biggest market with around 146,136 arrivals each month.

The importance of tourism to Cyprus is certainly not underestimated by the country. Tourism in Cyprus is viewed as being the country’s economic ‘heavy artillery’, according to CTO President Alekos Orountiotis. He commented: “Total tourism income for 2012 is expected to be around €1.9 billion”.

The Cypriot government is encouraging and undertaking substantial investment in tourism. The Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Neoklis Sylikotsis, reported that a number of projects with the approximate value of one billion euros are underway.

The Cypriot government have previously announced the creation of a Fast Track Mechanism for projects worth over 50 million euros. Sylikotsis explained that many projects such as golf courses and marinas have already received the necessary permits and are now in the process of finding financing.

This is great news for Cyprus as both tourist arrivals and revenue from tourism is expected to continue to increase in the coming months, as well as support from the Cypriot government in terms of investment in tourism in the country.

Source: Cyprus Mail, Opodo