Israel enjoys tourism boom as three millionth tourist arrives

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Israel’s three millionth tourist this year landed in Israel on Tuesday, a new all-time record for incoming tourism in Israel.

Ioana Isac from Romania is accompanied by her partner, Mihai Georgescu, tourist number 3,000,001.

“This is a special day and an historic milestone as we break the 3-million-tourist barrier and set a new all-time record,” said Israeli Tourism Minister Yariv Levin, who welcomed the couple in the arrival hall in Ben Gurion airport.

Israel is expected to end this year with about 3.5 million tourists, an all-time record and an increase of tens of percent on previous years, according to the Tourism Ministry.

Since the beginning of 2017, tourism has become one of the most significant economic engines in the Israeli economy and revenue from incoming tourism stands at about NIS 17 billion (about 4.9 billion US dollars), said the minister.

The leading source countries for incoming tourism are the United States, Russia, France, Germany and Britain since the beginning of this year, sources from the ministry said.

The ministry placed a strategic emphasis on incoming tourism from China, with sharp increase over the previous year, the ministry said.

Figures from the ministry show that the number of tourists totaled 2.71 million during the first nine months of this year, up 23 percent compared with the same period of 2016.

Tourists from China to Israel totaled 87,400 during the January-September period, an increase of 51 percent from a year ago.

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