Nearly 100,000 Chinese tourists visit Sri Lanka up to April

The Chinese news agency Xinhua reported that nearly 100,000 Chinese tourists visited Sri Lanka till April this year, making China among the top three countries generating the most number of tourists to the island country, statistics from the Tourism Ministry showed here Tuesday.

In April, 17,462 Chinese tourists arrived in Sri Lanka, making China the third largest market. India and Britain were the other two top markets last month.The total number of international tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka in April was 180,429, a 12.6 percent growth from the same period last year.Almost 94 percent of tourists traveled by air to Sri Lanka.

By the end of April this year, 888,353 tourists had visited Sri Lanka, a 16.1 percent growth over the same period last year when 765,202 tourists visited the country.In a bid to attract more Chinese travelers, Sri Lankan Tourism Minister John Amaratunga said last week that the Sri Lankan government had signed an agreement with a leading Chinese tour operator.

He said China is an important destination for Sri Lankan tourism and the government hopes to attract over 300,000 Chinese tourists at the end of this year. The minister further said the government will target a revenue of 4.4 billion U.S. dollars through its tourism sector this year.