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Mon 16 Mar 2020 02:42 PM

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The importance of tourism to Sharjah's economy

Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority says the emirate recorded a 3% growth in the number of hotel guests in 2019

The importance of tourism to Sharjah's economy
Sharjah has recently opened the first phase of Madar, a new entertainment hub.

The Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) has revealed that the emirate recorded a three percent growth in the number of hotel guests in 2019 compared to the previous year. 

The emirate, which is positioning itself as a hub for adventure tourism, welcomed approximately 1.8 million guests last year with a hotel occupancy rate of 66 percent.

In terms of nationalities, guests from the Russian Federation topped the list, followed by GCC countries such as Saudi Arabia and Oman, and then India.   

Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, chairman, SCTDA, said that the emirate witnessed robust inflows of tourists throughout last year, thanks to the emirate’s major achievements in terms of the launch of new recreation facilities, tourism initiatives and related activities.

Al Midfa added that by the end of 2019, the emirate had more than 10,000 hotel rooms, including 1,331 rooms in nine five-star hotels, 2,733 rooms in 21 four-star hotels as well as 2,485 apartments in 40 hotel apartment facilities.   

He said six new five-star and four-star hotels were inaugurated last year, and more than seven new hotel projects are expected to be unveiled in 2020.

Sharjah is placing great emphasis on the development of adventure tourism. The UAE’s third largest emirate offers a wide range of activities that include sand skiing, 4-wheel driving, swimming, kayaking and camping.    

Al Midfa said: “Last year was exceptionally successful for Sharjah tourism, the recorded turnout from international hotel operators was fantastic.

"Moving forward, we are planning to develop tourism experiences and attractions to enrich our visitors’ experiences and provide them with exceptional services that will make them return to Sharjah."

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