Turkey sees a boost in visitor revenues

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkish tourism revenues rose 8.6 percent year-on-year to $8.732 billion in the third quarter, up from $8.037 billion in the same period last year, the Turkish Statistics Institute said yesterday. In the second quarter, revenues had risen 1 percent to $3.73 billion. The statistics office said the third-quarter revenues consisted of $6.494 billion from foreign tourists and $2.238 billion from Turkish citizens resident abroad. Tourist spending amounted to $1,160 per foreign tourist and $653 per Turkish tourist. The country’s important tourism sector is a key factor in reining in the country’s large current account deficit, which is one of the main weak points of Turkey’s economy. The sector has rebounded strongly this year after being hit in 2006 by concerns about a bird flu outbreak, bomb attacks and regional instability.