Dubai saw a 6.2 percent hike in visitors in 2017, surpassing the 5 percent increase year-on-year of 2016 according to the Dubai Media Office.
There were 15.79 million tourists who visited the emirate in 2017 according to the latest data from Dubai Tourism – that is less than 5 million short of the 2020 goal of 20 million visitors per year.
The numbers place Dubai as the fourth most visited destination globally. India accounted for the largest proportion of visitors, delivering 2.1 million people to the emirate, while 1.53 million Saudis and 1.27 million Britons also spent at least one night there.
The news comes just days after it was announced that Dubai International Airport had maintained its place as the world’s busiest for international passengers in 2017 – despite passenger traffic growing at its slowest pace in at least nine years.
Annual traffic increased 5.5 percent to 88.2 million passengers, compared to 83.6 million in the previous year.
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Dubai Tourism Director General Helal Saeed Almarri said: “Our strong 6.2 percent growth in 2017 has allowed us to ramp up the pace towards meeting our 2020 targets… With Dubai firmly consolidating its position as the fourth most visited city globally, we remain confident that our performance, backed by the continued strength of our partnerships across government and private sector stakeholders, will enable us to successfully attain our goals of becoming the number 1 most visited city.”
The bulk of the remainder of Dubai’s visitors have also traveled from China, Russia, the USA, Germany and Iran, the report added.
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