By Stelios Orphanides
Cyprus had to attract 7.6 per cent more visitors from abroad during May in order to increase its revenue from tourism 1.1 per cent to €294.7m compared with the respective month of 2017, a clear sign that the economy’s benefits from tourism was decreasing, the statistical service said.
In May, tourists reduced their spending 6 per cent per stay to an average of €654.14 compared with May last year, Cystat said. Visitors from the UK, traditionally Cyprus’ largest source of incoming tourism, spent on average €694.35 in May or 3 per cent less compared with the year before while those from Russia, the second largest market, €625.87 which was 9.7 per cent less.
The current uncertainty over the impact on the UK’s economy from Brexit and the increasing geopolitical tensions affecting the performance of the Russian economy following a new round of sanctions announced by the US on Wednesday, may have a further negative effect on the island’s economy.
In January to May, revenue from tourism rose an annual 4.3 per cent to €677.2m against a 14 per cent increase in arrivals, Cystat said.