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Spending on outbound tourism declines in H1

By JT - Aug 26,2018 - Last updated at Aug 26,2018

Tourists walking around the ruins of the ancient city of Gadara in Um Qais, some 35km northwest of Irbid (Photo by Muath Freij)

AMMAN — Jordanians’ spending on outbound tourism in the first six months of 2018 declined by 7 per cent to JD482.1 million, compared with the same period of 2017, the Tourism Ministry announced on Sunday.

In a statement carried by the Jordan News Agency, Petra, Tourism Minister Lina Annab attributed the drop to the ministry's procedures aimed at addressing high demand on outbound tourism and encouraging inbound tourism.

"Such procedures included improving the competitiveness of local tourist products, developing services at tourist sites across the Kingdom and organising festivals", Annab said.

She added that the ministry is moving ahead with implementing “Al Urdun Ahla” (Jordan is more beautiful) programme aimed at encouraging Jordanian families to participate in domestic tourist trips to Petra, Aqaba, Wadi Rum and northern governorates, with the ministry covering 40 per cent of these trips’ costs.

The minister added that Eid Al Adha Holiday witnessed the dispatch of 12 tourist buses to Aqaba, Petra, Shobak, Wadi Rum, Ajloun and Jerash as part of the programme.

Annab said that the ministry, in cooperation with its private sector partners, seeks to lower operational costs at hotels and tourists restaurants to be more affordable for Jordanian households and to be a national alternative for tourism abroad.

Tourism revenues by the end of July totalled $2.9 billion (some JD2.1 billion), an increase of 13.7 per cent compared with the same period last year, which registered $2.55 billion, the Central Bank of Jordan (CBJ) announced recently.

CBJ mainly attributed the increase to the rise in number of overall tourists to 2.8 million, marking an increase of 9.3 per cent, compared to the same period in 2017.

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