Some 2.1 million tourists visited Morocco in the first quarter of 2017, representing a 7.9 increase year on year, according to data published by Morocco’s official Tourism Observatory on Friday.
The data show a record hike in Asian visitors to the North African kingdom. Chinese, South Korean, Japanese tourist arrivals increased by 784 percent, 63 percent increase, and 62 percent respectively. The number of Russian visitors was also up by 79 percent.
During the same period, Morocco welcomed more tourists from its traditional European market.
Visitors from Germany and France increased by six percent, while arrivals from United Kingdom and the Netherlands increased by five percent.
A total of 10.3 million tourists visited Morocco in 2016, representing an increase of 1.5 percent compared to 2015.
Morocco expects tourist arrivals to grow by 6 percent in 2017.
Tourism is one of the main economic drivers in Morocco as it employs over 500,000 people, nearly five percent of the country’s total jobs, and makes up 6.7 percent of Morocco’s GDP.