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SINGAPORE'S visitor arrivals and tourism spend both grew in the first half of this year, with tourism receipts expanding by 10 per cent year on year to hit S$12.7 billion.
"The strong growth in H1 2017 tourism receipts was due to the higher expenditure across all major components including shopping, accommodation, food & beverage, and sightseeing, entertainment & gaming," said the Singapore Tourism Board (STB).
Meanwhile, visitor arrivals increased 4 per cent to 8.5 million visitors, the STB report showed.
Chinese travellers were both the biggest spenders as well as the biggest source market in the first six months of the year. However, spend on sightseeing, entertainment & gaming was excluded in the country analysis due to commercial sensitivity of information, said the STB.
In the hotel industry, gazetted hotel room revenue was estimated at S$1.6 billion, declining 1.6 per cent from the corresponding quarter a year ago. The 1.2 percentage point increase in average occupancy rate to 85 per cent helped offset the 1.2 per cent decline in average room rate to S$231, which caused revenue per available room (RevPAR) to edge up slightly by 0.2 per cent to S$197.
For the second quarter alone, visitor arrivals grew 5 per cent year on year to reach 4.2 million visitors, while tourism receipts were also up 5 per cent to S$6.4 billion.