PHNOM PENH, April 19 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia on Monday predicted that international tourist arrivals to the kingdom this year would decline by another 70 percent due to the ongoing impact of COVID-19.
"For 2021, due to the prolonged impact of COVID-19, Cambodia's tourism is projected to continue to drop by another 60 percent to 70 percent," the country's Ministry of Tourism said in its report.
The report said the Southeast Asian country received 1.31 million international tourists in 2020, down 80 percent from 6.61 million in 2019.
Tourism earned a gross revenue of only 1.02 billion U.S. dollars last year, down 79 percent from 4.92 billion dollars in the year before, it said, adding that the sector contributed only 3 percent to the country's gross domestic product, down from 12 percent.
The huge slump has resulted from the impact of COVID-19 that has forced the kingdom to impose entry restrictions for all foreign travelers since March last year.
Ministry of Tourism secretary of state and spokesman Top Sopheak has pinned hopes for a tourism recovery on COVID-19 vaccines.
Cambodia launched an anti-COVID-19 inoculation drive on Feb. 10. So far, more than 1.2 million people in the priority groups have been vaccinated against the virus, showed a government report. Enditem