Lebanon Businessnews News

Tourists tax-free
spending is up
Fashion and clothing top the list
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Tax-free spending has grown six percent in the first half of the year compared to the same period last year, according to the Global Blue report ‘Insights into Tourist Spending’ for the first semester.

Joe Yaacoub, Head of Commercial Lebanon at Global Blue, said: “It is the first year in four years that we started to recover. This is because Saudis and Kuwaitis have returned to the country.”

The number of tourists also grew 14 percent in the same period reaching 826,129 visitors, according to the Ministry of Tourism.

The number of Arab visitors increased 21 percent, Europeans increased 12 percent, and Americans 11 percent.

Yaacoub said that a majority of the Europeans are expatriates.

Iraqis topped the list of tourists visiting the country, followed by Jordanians, and Egyptians.

The spending of Saudis increased 19 percent in the first half of the year, with around 30,000 Saudis visiting the country in the first half the year.

“This has boosted the growth in spending. We still need to triple this growth to reach 2010 numbers,” said Yaacoub.

In the first half of 2010, more than 100,000 Saudis entered the country.

Spending on fashion and clothing increased five percent in the first semester, souvenirs and gifts (47 percent), and department stores (23 percent).
Reported by Rania Ghanem
Date Posted: Jul 26, 2017
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