Published on : Thursday, January 19, 2017
The number of tourists to Japan from overseas had increased by 21.8% to about 24.04 million in 2016. And, their spending grew by 7.8% to $33 billion and both these figures represent all-time highs according to an official statement issued by the government on Tuesday.
However, the pace of increase for both these figures was slower as compared to the previous year.
During that point of time, the number of tourists who arrived in Japan had risen by 47.1% and the total spending soared to nearly 71.5%. The Japan Tourism Agency contributed the 2016 rise in the spending to the expansion of certain items that were duty-free and also the flexible visa requirements for tourists.
The rise in tourist arrivals was also due to a stronger yen and the economic slowdown of China. Furthermore, the earthquakes that struck Kumamoto Prefecture in April.
The Chinese tourists had actually spent approximately ¥1.48 trillion last year that marked an increase of 39.4% of the total and this was followed by the travellers from Taiwan who had ended up spending ¥524.5 billion and South Korea at ¥357.8 billion.
The average spending every visitor slumped by 11.5% from a year earlier to ¥155,896.
If spending for every person is not able to grow further, it might be tough for the government to achieve its 2020 target of ¥8 trillion and the economy would not be capable of witnessing growth as estimated. Japan should make it a point to attract a greater number of Western tourists, especially the wealthier ones, if it aims to expand its tourism industry.
The Japan Tourism Organization said that China has hit the 6 million mark for the first time in terms of its travellers in Japan.