Singapore raked in S$18.8 billion in tourism receipts last year, the highest in ten years. The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) said this is a 49 per cent increase from 2009, exceeding previous forecasts of between S$17.5-18.5 billion.
STB said the high growth in tourism dollars is due to higher spending per person, and more international visitors due to positive economic sentiment and the opening of the two Integrated Resorts.
Sightseeing and entertainment accounted for a fifth of the tourism receipts, some S$4 billion and a 1,800 per cent jump from 2009. For the first time, spending and gambling at the two Integrated Resorts was also included into this component.
However, the STB was quick to add that growth was seen across the sector. Aw Kah Peng, Chief Executive of STB, said: “The two Integrated Resorts were highlights, but we saw growth across every part of the tourism sector. Spending in F&B grew, spending at the hotels grew, spending at various sightseeing and attractions grew.”
Singapore welcomed 11.9 million overseas visitors last year, led by growth in the top five markets – Indonesia, China, Australia, Malaysia and India.