Mauritius tourist arrivals rise 4.6% in 2014

by Reuters 0

This was driven by increased demand from Europe and China, the government said on Thursday.

Earnings from tourism, which is a valuable source of foreign exchange for the Indian Ocean island state, rose 10.8 per cent year-on-year in the nine months to September, to 32.23 billion rupees (1 billion dollars). The full-year earnings figure will be issued later.

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The Tourism ministry said arrivals rose to 1,038,968 last year from 993,106 in the previous year. Numbers from Europe, which accounts for 54.9 per cent of visitors to Mauritius climbed 4.3 per cent to 570,548.

Tourists from Asia rose 19.5 per cent to 158,361 driven by higher numbers from China, which jumped 51.2 per cent to 63,365.

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Mauritius, like other long-haul destinations in the region, has turned east in search of sun-worshippers wanting a slice of Indian Ocean paradise to compensate for weak growth in more traditional European markets.