PHNOM PENH (XINHUA) – The number of international tourists to Cambodia has increased at a faster-than-expected pace, prompting the kingdom to lift its target to two million tourists for 2022, up from earlier forecast of one million, Tourism Minister Thong Khon said yesterday.
The Southeast Asian nation received 998,272 international visitors in the first eight months of 2022, up 720 per cent compared to the same period last year, according to the Ministry of Tourism’s latest report. In August alone, the kingdom welcomed 254,813 foreign holidaymakers, up 2,680 per cent compared to the same month last year.
During the January-August period this year, neighbouring Thailand topped the chart of the international tourist arrivals to Cambodia, followed by Vietnam, China, and the United States, the report added.
“Based on these latest figures, Cambodia is expected to attract from 1.5 million to two million international tourists in the entirety of 2022,” the minister told Xinhua.
Khon attributed the sharp rise to the kingdom’s full re-opening of its borders to all travellers, tourism development strategies, and high COVID-19 vaccination rates.
Tourism is one of the four pillars supporting Cambodia’s economy. In the pre-pandemic era, the country greeted up to 6.6 million international tourists in 2019, generating gross revenue of USD4.92 billion, according to the ministry.