Tourist arrival numbers increase

Tourist arrival rate has increased by 22% in the last month, Tourism Ministry has revealed. It is believed that the increase in arrivals is owed to the increasing number of Chinese tourists visiting the Maldives.

During a press conference held on Tuesday, Minister Ali Waheed said with the new government, the Maldivian tourism sector is witnessing rapid development.

"During January, there was a 6,5% increase in tourist arrival rate, which then increased to 16% during February. The rate has now increased to 222% during March", said the Minister.

The Minister said 482,978 tourists have visited Maldives thus far this year.

"Therefore, it is likely that we will be able to reach the tourist arrival target of 1.5 million set by the president [Ibrahim Mohamed Solih], our forecasts have confirmed the possibility", said Ali Waheed.

While the overall number of tourists have increased, the number of Chinese and Indian tourists visiting the Maldives have also increased significantly, he added.

"Since the new government began administration, the only drop [in arrival numbers] was China. I am happy to note that China is now in the first place of the top five markets, with Italy, Germany and India following closely behind. While China and India are at the top, Germany and India are at nearly the same arrival rate. We have already begun reaping the benefits of the increasingly close relationship between Maldives and India', said Ali Waheed.