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Seychelles needs to diversify its tourism markets, says minister 

Victoria, Seychelles | January 5, 2024, Friday @ 15:54 in Business » TOURISM | By: Sedrick Nicette Edited By: Betymie Bonnelame | Views: 5538
Seychelles needs to diversify its tourism markets, says minister 

In 2023, a total of 350,879 visitors entered the country, an increase of close to 20,000 visitors compared to 2022. (Gerard Larose)

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Seychelles has seen a 6 percent increase in tourist arrivals in 2023 compared to 2022, however latest developments in several parts of the world show a need to diversify the island nation's markets, said a top official on Friday.

The statement was made by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Sylvestre Radegonde, who praised the staff of the tourism department for their hard work.

"This result did not just come out of nothing, it came about due to a lot of work from the tourism department and all the staff, along with those in our foreign office," said Radegonde.

He congratulated all other partners in the tourism industry namely hotels, tour guides, operators, and airlines among others.

In 2023, a total of 350,879 visitors entered the country, an increase of close to 20,000 visitors compared to 2022.

The highest number of visitors was from Germany with a total of 54,925, followed by France with 42,410 visitors and Russia with 38,172.  

The Minister congratulated all other partners in the tourism industry namely hotels, tour guides, operators, and airlines among others. (Seychelles Nation) Photo License: CC-BY  

Radegonde spoke of the need for Seychelles to diversify its tourism markets and that work is already underway.

"Recently, we have seen that if we put too much of our attention into one area, and ignore the other, the risk remains that if something goes wrong in that market, it will be difficult to recover," he explained.

In 2023, the top tourism markets for Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, were primarily Europe, UAE, South Africa and the US.

Europe remains the leading continent with 72.8 percent of visitors, followed by 15.4 percent from Asia and 7.6 percent from Africa. Non-European markets make up 27.3 percent of visitors to Seychelles.

Last year, there was an increase of 5 percent in visitor arrivals from Asia compared to the same period in 2022, with arrivals from China increasing by over 600 percent.  

Leading markets from Asia are the UAE, Israel and India, bringing in 69 percent.

Africa has recorded a total of 26,602 visitors in 2023, representing a growth of 13 percent over the same period in 2022. The main market was South Africa accounting for 35 percent of visitors from the region.

Visitor arrivals from America are currently up by 8 percent with the US with a market share of 76 percent.

According to the Tourism Department, the outlook for the first half of 2024 currently looks extremely positive.

"There is a 6 percent increase in seat availability to the destination between January to June 2024. We are also seeing an increase in forward bookings between January to May 2024, with a significant increase in March and May compared to the same months in 2023," the department shared in a presentation.

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Tags: Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism

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