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Singapore fifth most visited city in the world: report

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SINGAPORE was ranked the fifth globally for international visitors and fourth worldwide for visitor spend in the latest Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index.

SINGAPORE was ranked the fifth globally for international visitors and fourth worldwide for visitor spend in the latest Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index.

With 19.41 million, Bangkok claimed the top spot for the third year running in terms of international visitors, followed by London and Paris.

In 2016, Singapore saw 13.11 million visitors, up 8.8 per cent year on year, the report said. Meanwhile, visitor expenditure in Singapore grew from US$13.07 billion in 2015 to US$15.69 billion in 2016. Singapore is forecast to receive 2.6 per cent more visitors and 0.3 per cent more in spend in 2017.

While the report's figure differs from the Singapore Tourism Board's figure, which estimates that some 16.4 million visitors came to Singapore last year, this could be due to the methodology used as Mastercard looks at arrivals by air and sea while STB also includes land.

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Deborah Heng, country manager, Mastercard Singapore, said: "With tourism a key contributor to Singapore's economy, it's also notable that this year-on-year growth in visitor arrivals is accompanied by the highest overall tourist expenditure in Asia. This excellent showing demonstrates how collaboration between the public and private sectors can drive the right results for the local economy."

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