Singapore welcomed 8.4 million visitor arrivals from January to October 2007, representing an increase of 5% over last year’s figures.
The Middle East region was a major contributor to this trend, with total visitor arrivals growing 20 percent year-on-year. All GCC markets saw more visitors to Singapore compared to a year ago, with strong double digit growth from key markets like the UAE (20%), Saudi Arabia (12%), and Kuwait (13%).
In addition, Iran has also emerged as a dynamic market for Singapore, showing significant growth in visitor numbers in 2007, with a 49% increase from last year. Arrival figures from the Middle East are set to exceed this growth rate in 2008.
Events on the calendar for 2008 include the planned launch in March of the Singapore Flyer, a giant observation wheel set to become Asia's most visible iconic visitor attraction.
Singapore will also host the FORMULA ONE Grand Prix for the first time in September, where racing enthusiasts can look forward to experiencing a breathtaking street circuit in the heart of downtown Singapore.
The world-class affair is already set to be one of the most dramatic and atmospheric events on the international racing calendar, with plans in place to be the first race in the history of the championship to be held at night. “With so much going on in Singapore for 2008, the city is set to grow its tourism levels and cater to a variety of visitors from the Middle East,” said Siew-Kheng Kang, Regional Director for South Asia, Middle East & Africa, Singapore Tourism Board.
“In addition, the New Year will see more options on offer to ensure that they have a memorable time in Singapore, including tailored holiday and healthcare packages that appeal to regional visitors,” she added.
Singapore will continue to host its famous annual events, including Chinatown’s Chinese New Year, The Great Singapore Sale, Singapore’s Food and Fashion Festival, and Christmas in the Tropics.
© 2007 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )