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    Failte Ireland CEO welcomes overseas visitor growth of 6.7% in the first half of 2018

    Failte Ireland CEO welcomes overseas visitor growth of 6.7% in the first half of 2018

    The figures show that Ireland had 4.9m overseas visitors from January to June, with just over 1m visitors from North America (+10.7%), and 1.78m from Mainland Europe (+10.2), with Germany (+21.2%), Italy (+14%) and the Nordics (10.2%) growing strongly. British visitor numbers also increased by 2.3% to 1.79m, and visitors from all other areas grew by 1%.

    Welcoming today’s figures, Fáilte Ireland’s Chief Executive Paul Kelly said:

    “Today’s set of figures provide further evidence that tourism continues to prosper and provide significant benefits to the economy in terms of revenue and jobs. This growth in international visitor numbers and revenue is not only great news for employment but also for government finances, with 23 cent in every Euro of tourism spend finding its way to the exchequer. The tax take from tourists is now the equivalent of over €1,000 for every household in Ireland. There is still huge opportunity to further grow the contribution tourism can make to our economy through public and private sector investment and by expanding both the regional and seasonal spread of tourism. With approximately 80% of tourist bed nights in just five counties, we still have lots of opportunity to grow but this will take investment in regional product development, industry development and marketing to achieve this growth and spread the benefits throughout the country. It is also essential that we sustain this growth from as wide range of markets as possible because a robust starting position will be essential if we have to weather the storm of a hard Brexit.”

    Overseas Tourism January to June 2018
    (Staying and same day visits 000)

      2017 2018 % change
    Britain 1,745 1,786 2.3
    North America 922 1,021 10.7
    Mainland Europe 1,618 1,783 10.2
    France 276 275 -0.3
    Germany 309 375 21.2
    Italy 158 180 14.0
    Spain 209 206 -1.7
    Benelux 188 193 2.9
    Nordics 113 125 10.2
    All Other Europe 365 430 17.7
    Other Areas 280 283 1.0
    Australia/New Zealand 89 93 4.6
    Other 191 189 -0.8
    Total Overseas 4,566 4,873 6.7

    Source: CSO Overseas Travel, 26 July 2018

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