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Myanmar Sees Decline in Tourists for 2016

Approximately 100,000 less tourists have visited Myanmar from January to June of 2016 compared to 2015. This decline comes after aspiring predictions made by the tourism industry that Myanmar would welcome a record setting 6 million tourists this year, which would be a 25 percent increase from 2015. The first six months of 2015 saw more than 2 million tourists visiting the country.

No specific reason is known for the decline in tourism.

New regulations and committees, such as The Taking Care of Foreign Visitors Committee and the Committee for the Smooth Entrance of Foreign Visitors have been created by Myanmar’s new government to ensure both the national security and the well-being of tourists. It is unclear what the effects these new committees and the resulting regulations will have on the tourism industry. The tourism industry is considered one of the main drivers in the national economy. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) reports that revenues from tourism grew by 19 percent last year, totaling $2.1 billion USD, more than 4 percent of Myanmar’s GDP.