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Tourist arrivals in Asia-Pacific still below pre-pandemic levels — UNWTO

PHILIPPINE STAR/ KRIZ JOHN ROSALES

TOURIST arrivals in the Asia-Pacific region during the first nine months of the year were still below pre-pandemic levels despite the opening of many destinations, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).   

The UNWTO’s latest World Tourism Barometer issued on Wednesday showed that international visitors in the region increased for the January to September period but was still 83% below the numbers three years ago.  

“In Asia and the Pacific (+230%) arrivals more than tripled in the first nine months of 2022, reflecting the opening of many destinations, though remained 83% below 2019 levels,” the UNWTO said.    

The UN agency said international tourism is expected to reach 65% of pre-pandemic levels by yearend following the surge in the first three quarters.  

“An estimated 700 million tourists traveled internationally between January and September, more than double (+133%) the number recorded in the same period of 2021. This equates to 63% of 2019 levels and puts the sector on course to reach 65% of its pre-pandemic levels this year,” the UNWTO said.    

“Results were boosted by strong pent-up demand, improved confidence levels and the lifting of restrictions in an increasing number of destinations,” it added.    

The Philippine Tourism department recently announced that its 1.7 million tourist arrivals projection for 2022 has been surpassed with 2.025 million visitors recorded as of Nov. 14. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave

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