|By Khetam Malkawi, Jordan Times,
AmmanMcClatchy-Tribune Regional News
Sept. 03, 2010--AMMAN -- The first seven months of 2010 witnessed a rebound in tourism after a "dismal" year in 2009, when the number of visitors from countries affected by the global financial crisis declined, an official said.
Jordan Tourism Board (JTB) Director General Nayef Fayez told The Jordan Times that the January-July period saw "significant" growth in the number of visitors originating from these countries after a decline in their numbers over the past two years.
According to JTB figures, the number of visitors from the UK reached 43,000 in the January-July period, a 28.5 per cent rise compared to the same period in 2009 when 33,301 Britons visited the Kingdom.
The first seven months of the year also witnessed increases in the number of tourists from Spain (78.4 per cent), France (70 per cent), Russia (59 per cent) and Italy (38 per cent).
The number of tourists from Arab countries also rose, according to Fayez, with visitors from Saudi Arabia making up the bulk of Arab visitors.
He said some 416,647 Saudis visited the country in the first seven months of the year, a 17.3 per cent increase over the same period of 2009, when 355,156 Saudis visited the country.
The JTB director attributed these gains to the marketing strategy adopted by the board that focuses on e-marketing and positive messages delivered through the media about tourism in Jordan.
In addition, he noted that the JTB participated in several exhibitions to promote the Kingdom's tourism product abroad.
Overall tourism figures also showed a 29 per cent increase in number of overnight visitors in the period in question, with some 2.67 million tourists visiting the country between January and July, compared to 2.07 million visitors in the first seven months of 2009.
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Copyright (c) 2010, Jordan Times, Amman
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