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Tourism: Balkan region top performer for arrivals growth

Strong expansion in Montenegro, Greece, Slovenia

12 July, 14:16
(ANSA) - BELGRADE, 12 JUL - Several countries in the Balkans and in Southeast Europe are among the nations that recorded the biggest growth in Europe in terms of international tourist arrivals in the first months of this year, show data made public by the European Travel Commission (ETC), organization responsible for the promotion of Europe as a tourist destination in third markets.

According to the ETC report 'European Tourism - Trends & Prospects 2019', Montenegro (+50%) was the "top performer" in Europe for the growth of tourist arrivals to date in 2019, but also Slovenia and Greece (both +8%) were "star performers".

"Montenegro has benefited from improved air transport accessibility and several promotional activities implemented by national tourism authorities," ECT said, adding that "2019 prospects for Greece are positive despite the return of competing destinations." "Balkan destinations' efforts to expand the tourism season, diversify the product offer, and develop niche marketing are bearing fruit", the Commission noted.

Good results were also recorded, in terms of international arrivals, in Bulgaria (+4,3% year-on-year between January-April), Croatia (+2,6% in January-May) and Serbia (+4.5% January-March). Chinese tourists continued to grow in numbers, with a significant growth in the first months of the years in particular in Montenegro (+150%), Cyprus (+62%), and Croatia (+44%).

The ECT noted that "demand for tourism in Europe is expected to maintain an upward trajectory over 2019." International tourist arrivals to Europe is projected to modestly grow by 3.6% in 2019, the ECT forecasted. (ANSA).

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