Tourism, she said, should not be seen as something merely “nice to have,” but rather as part of the solution to the country’s economic woes, including record-high unemployment.
Overall visits during the period fell by 76 percent compared to last year, while for September the figure was 96 percent, ministry says.
Israel saw a 96 percent drop in tourism in September compared to the same period last year, recording only 15,100 tourist entries into the country, according to the Israeli Tourism Ministry.
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During January-September, 783,000 entries were recorded, a 76 percent drop from the 3.3 million people who visited the country during the same period last year, the ministry said in a statement on Wednesday, adding that the steep decline equates to a cumulative revenue loss of NIS 12.1 billion (about $3.6 billion) for the period.
Incoming Israeli Tourism Minister Orit Farkash-Hacohen, who assumed office on Oct. 2, said that the country’s tourism sector had been among the hardest hit by the pandemic.
“Tourism is an important economic industry, of the utmost significance for the Israeli economy, and [has been] one of the main victims of the corona crisis,” she said. Read more at JNS