Meltdown slows tourists arrival

Kathmandu, March 2:

The global meltdown is slowly showing its impact on the economy. According to latest data from the Immigration Office, Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA), tourists arrival in February by air plunged by 16.2 per cent to 25,181 in comparison to the same month last year.

However, the number of Sri Lankan and Pakistani visitors increased, said

Nepal Tourism Board (NTB). “In South Asia, Sri Lanka and Pakistan registered growth by 40.1 per cent and 78.6 per cent respectively,” the board said adding that on the contrary Indian and Bangladeshi vistors numbers’ witnessed negative growth of 4.6 per cent and 18.1 per cent respectively in February.

Other Asian countries like Thailand and Malaysia maintained the upward trend with 1.5 percent and 24.2 per cent growth respectively whereas arrivals from China, Japan, South Korea and Singapore witnessed negative growth by 45.5 per cent, 24 per cent, 26.1 per cent and 28.1 per cent respectively.

European markets except for Denmark (up by 6.7 per cent), Switzerland (up by 8.6 per cent) and Sweden (up by 3.3 per cent) registered negative growth in comparison to the same month last year.

A total of 25,166 foreign tourists departed from TIA in February whereas the number of Nepali arrivals stood at 43,448 while 41,579 Nepalis departed from TIA in February, said NTB.