9 Feb 2005

Record tourism figures for Fiji

7:45 am on 9 February 2005

Fiji is predicting further increases in tourist arrivals this year after a record breaking 2004.

Latest figures released by the Fiji Visitors Bureau show that last year the country welcomed more than half a million tourists for the first time, an all time record.

The actual figure was 507-thousand with earnings from tourism growing to almost 440-million US dollars.

The star performer was the New Zealand market with 103-thousand tourists arriving, an increase of 37-percent over the figure for 2003.

Much of the growth from New Zealand has been attributed to entry of the budget airlines, Virgin Blue and Freedom Air.