Iran’s H1 foreign arrivals up over 51% y/y

November 5, 2018

TEHRAN - International tourist arrivals in Iran rose by more than 51 percent in the first half of the current Iranian calendar year (started March 21) from a year earlier, tourism chief has said.

“Despite threats of the U.S., foreign tourist arrivals in Iran has risen by more than 51 percent during the first six months of this year,” Ali-Asghar Mounesan said, adding, with regard to last year’s growth of four percent, it has been an unprecedented progress for the past few decades, ISNA reported.

The official declined to provide further details or to say how many foreigners visited the country in the six-month period.

Mounesan, who doubles as vice president, in September said Iran’s international visitors surged 45 percent in the first five months from the same period last year.

Other sources have reported that Iran hosted some three million of inbound passengers from March 21 to September 22. Iran attracted five million foreign nationals in the past year.  

U.S. President Donald Trump in May pulled out from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, re-imposing new sanctions on Iran’s economy.

The U.S.-led restrictions and propaganda campaign, however, have cut the number of Westerner travelers to Iran but the country is trying its best to attract more visitors from neighboring countries.

Mohammad Moheb-khodaei, a senior Iranian tourism official, said in June:  “The number of travelers from European countries cut by 24 percent in the first three months of the [current Iranian calendar] year from a year earlier.”

Over the past couple of years, Air France, British Airways and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines stopped flights to Tehran due to what they publicized as “negative results and financial outlook.”

Under the 2025 Tourism Vision Plan, the country is expecting to increase the number of tourism arrivals from 4.8 million in 2014 to 20 million.

AFM/MG

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