Tokyo, Japan (AHN) – Foreign tourist arrivals in Japan declined 62.5 percent in April, as visitors stayed away from the quake-stricken country.
According to an estimate released by the Japan National Tourism Organization on Thursday, only 295,800 foreign tourists came to Japan last month. The number was lower than the 300,000 visitors registered in May 2003 when the SARS epidemic hit the country.
A year ago for the same month, more than 788,200 foreign visitors visited Japan. However, right after the March 11 temblor, tourist arrival dropped 50.3 percent on that month, primarily because of fears of exposure to radioactive radiation from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
Prior to the natural catastrophe and the nuclear disaster, the Japan Tourism Agency forecast 9 million foreign tourist arrival in 2011, up from the 8.6 million who came in 2010.
Tourism workers said this is the worst slump in the country’s tourism industry on record.
Most of the tourists who came after the tremor are from China and South Korea. Visitors from western countries could hardly be seen. The few who visited did so because of a compelling reason such as having a family member who works in Japan. But they admitted that they even thought of canceling their bookings because of a perceived lack of transparency by the government on the radiation problem.
Category: Tourism And Leisure
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