Turkey raises tourism income 11.4 percent despite political setbacks
ANKARA – Hürriyet Daily News
The country’s tourism sector has managed to raise their income by 5.5 percent to $7.7 billion in the last quarter of the year. DHA PhotoTurkey raised its tourism revenues by 11.4 percent to $32.3 billion in 2013 in comparison with a year earlier, official data has shown, marking a significant performance improvement despite the tough political conditions abound, particularly during the second half of the year.
The country’s tourism sector has managed to raise their income by 5.5 percent to $7.7 billion in the last quarter of the year, Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) data announced Jan. 30 revealed.
Tourism had taken a major hit in the summer, when thousands of protestors across the country, primarily in large cities, spilled out into the streets to demonstrate their opposition to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
Particularly the stiff clashes between the protestors and the police at the central areas of Istanbul that accommodate the majority of hotels in the city caused remarkable number of cancellations in hotels and tours.
However, even the protests, which began in June and continued until September, did not hampered the country’s tourism revenues, as the political tension in Egypt, one of its main rivals as a favorable holiday spot, sufficated its touristic lure.
Egyptian tourism was hit last year when hundreds were killed in violence that followed the army’s overthrow of the elected Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July after mass protests against him.
Meanwhile, the TÜİK data also showed the average expenditure of foreigners was $749 per capita, while the average expenditure of Turkish nationals abroad was $1,252 per capita.
More than one third of the revenues yielded throughout the year came through foreign visitors, while around 21 percent of income was garnered by Turkish nationals living abroad.