Visitor arrivals hit all-time high

Solomon Airlines Airbus A320 at the Honiara International Airport. Photo: SIBC

Solomon Islands has surpassed the 25,000 annual international visitor mark for the first time since numbers were first recorded in 1990.

Figures released by the Solomon Islands National Statistics Office showed a total of 25,709 international visitors travelled to Solomon Islands last year, which is a 10.9 percent increase over the 23,192 international visitors recorded for 2016.

Australian visitor arrivals continue to dominate, accounting for nearly 40 percent of all arrivals.

About 6.6 percent of visitors were New Zealanders, and Americans accounted for 6.3 percent. Visitation from Fiji and Papua New Guinea followed closely.

Visitation from mainland China increased by more than 47 percent to account for 4.7 percent of the total arrivals.

Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau CEO Josefa Tuamoto acknowledged the record numbers and said the country needs to maintain its focus on growing the leisure market.

He said the country’s accommodation infrastructure needs a boost, particularly in Honiara where there is considerable potential from business-related traffic.

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