A record number of tourists visited Brazil in August and expectations are
that the year will be the best ever. According to the Ministry of Tourism, from
January to August, 3.9 million foreign tourists visited Brazil, an increase of
15.7%, compared to 2003.
Speaking at commemorations of World Tourism Day, which was yesterday, minister of Tourism, Walfrido dos Mares Guia, said: “All sectors in tourism are showing strong growth. Domestic tourism is up, along with international tourism. Sector revenue is growing and more people are visiting more places.”
Foreign tourists have spent US$ 2.1 billion in Brazil so far this year, up 36.36% from last year. As a result the tourism sector had a surplus of US$ 355 million (the amount foreign visitors spent that was more than Brazilians travelling abroad spent).
In August, foreign tourists spent US$ 257 million in Brazil, up 12.22% over August 2003, and almost as much as visitors spent during the tourist season in the summer.
Minister Mares Guia says the results are the fruit of effort and investments.
“Since this government took office, we have doubled the number of international events and fairs promoting tourism in Brazil. We travel with the President when he goes abroad and sponsor workshops and exhibitions. We encourage investments,” said the Minister.
For 2005, the Ministry of Tourism has a budget of US$ 19.4 million (56 million reais) for domestic tourism promotion, and US$ 60.2 million (173 million reais) for international tourism.
Domestic tourism is also on the rise. With 20.1 million trips between January and August, that is an increase of 16.7% over the same period in 2003.
Translator: Allen Bennett
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