Tourism grew by 15 percent
in first six month
Sardouk: Stakeholders are working hand-in-hand
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The number of inbound travelers grew by 15 percent during the first semester of 2015, compared to the same period last year. It is the first double digit growth since 2010, with over 671,000 visitors.

Nada Sardouk, Director General of the Ministry of Tourism (MOT), said: “We launched the ‘Live Love Lebanon’ campaign to change the mood and attract the attention of our neighbors. The results of our set of strategies and campaigns are starting to show,” she said.

With over 217,000 visitors, Arabs topped the list of visitors, growing by ten percent. Europeans follow with over 216,000 visitors, growing by 14 percent. American visitors grew by nearly 50 percent. It is the highest ever American visitors’ rate. Sardouk said that the MoT’s strategy to attract expats mainly from South America has led to this increase in visits.

“For the first time, all concerned parties are working hand-in-hand, with a defined vision and objectives. This will lead to success,” she said.

NGOs and private initiatives, such as cultural communities and missions are promoting Lebanon in the diaspora countries, said Sardouk. “We have started to tap these markets better,” she said. Forums such as ‘Lebanese Diaspora Energy’, headed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants have also increased the visibility of the country. Other activities, led by the World Lebanese Cultural Union had a good impact and a promising role, Sardouk said.

“We believe that we will end the year with good results,” she said.
Reported by Rana Freifer
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Date Posted: Aug 07, 2015