Tourist arrivals for the first nine months of 2003 rose by 3.8% from 482,585 in 2002 to 500,846 in 2003. Further details are given in Tables 3 to 6.
Around 90% of the tourists came mainly for holidays while 4.6% were on business/conference trips, and another 3.4% were in transit (Table 4).
Arrivals from Europe, which accounted for 65.3% of total tourist arrivals, grew by 3.9% to 327,041 during the first nine months of 2003 compared to 314,863 in the same period of 2002. Arrivals from France, our leading market, representing 27.1% of total tourist arrivals and 41.5% of the European market, slipped by 2.0% to reach 135,707. Among the other major markets, growth was registered in arrivals from United Kingdom (+16.5%), Italy (+2.8%) and Germany (+1.0%). Trends among the other European countries were as follows: Spain (+24.8%), Switzerland (+9.9%), Sweden (+9.2%), Austria (-1.7%), Netherlands (-2.7%) and Belgium (-3.7%).
For the period January to September 2003, arrivals from Africa, with a share of 25.5% of total tourist arrivals, registered a growth of 1.1% to attain 127,952. Arrivals from Reunion Island, the major generating country of the region, were down by 1.2%, while those from the Republic of South Africa were up by 5.1%. Changes in arrivals from other African countries were as follows: Comoros (+72.8%), Malagasy Republic (+27.5%), Kenya (-1.4%), Seychelles (-18.8%) and Zimbabwe (-37.3%).
Tourist arrivals from the Asian market expanded by 10.0% during the reference period and constituted 6.5% of total tourist arrivals. Arrivals from India, our major source on this continent, rose by 26.2% to reach 19,577. Among the other Asian countries, the following trends were noted: United Arab Emirates (+161.0%), People's Republic of China (-23.3%), Japan (-24.8%), Malaysia (-27.9%), Singapore (-44.5%) and Hong Kong (-50.3%).
Arrivals from Oceania increased by 16.1% due mainly to a rise of 17.0% in arrivals from Australia.
Arrivals from the continent of America grew by 11.6% being the result of growths from USA (+14.0%), Canada (+0.2%) and other American countries (+18.3%).
source: Central Statistics Office