Finally, a solution for the Kingdom's economy? Tourism revenues on the rise in Jordan
Jordan recently launched a religious tourism campaign to encourage travelers to visit sites such as the alleged baptism site of Jesus (Courtesy of Wikipedia)
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The Kingdom’s tourism sector experienced a rise in revenues and number of visitors in the first three months of 2014, compared to the same period a year earlier, according to an official report.
A Ministry of Tourism report issued on Thursday showed that revenues rose nearly JD728 million in the first quarter, an 11.1 per cent rise compared with the first quarter in 2013.
The number of both individual and group visitors also increased in that same period.
The report showed there has been a 4.7 per cent increase in the number of group visitors in the January-March period of the current year compared to the same period in 2013.
A total of 932,000 individual visitors came to the country in the period in question, with a 3.1 per cent increase compared with the same period in 2013, according to the Tourism Ministry.
Minister of Tourism Nidal Katamine said the rise in the number of tourists is due to efforts to promote Jordan as a destination for religious tourism, and to promote the Kingdom’s tourist attractions to residents of East Asian countries.
Jordan is home to several Christian and Islamic sites that attract visitors every year, such as the Baptism Site in the Jordan Valley, where Jesus Christ was baptised by John the Baptist according to Christian beliefs.
Muslims also visit the tombs of Prophet Mohammad’s companions in the northern and southern Mazar areas.
In a statement sent to The Jordan Times, Katamine said there has been a rise in the number of visitors coming from Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh and India.
The number of Malaysian tourists increased by 42.2 per cent in the concerned period, and there was also a rise in the number of visitors from Pakistan (64.2 per cent), Bangladesh (48.8 per cent) and India (13.5 per cent), according to the report.
The minister said the improvement of tourism revenues has also had an impact on employment in the sector, which rose by 10 per cent.
By Khetam Malkawi
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