Chinese, Indian tourists to Australia tripled in last decade
SYDNEY (AFP) - Australia's strong dollar has done little to dampen its popularity with Chinese and Indian visitors, with tourist numbers from those countries tripling in the past decade, data showed Wednesday.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics said there were 630,000 visits from Chinese tourists in 2012 compared with 190,000 in 2002. Indian visits went from 45,000 to 160,000 in the same period.
"Despite a high Australian dollar, Australia's short-term visitor numbers were up by nearly five percent since 2011 with 6.1 million short trips made to Australia - 270,000 more than we saw in 2011," said Mr Neil Scott, the bureau's assistant director of demography.
Neighbouring New Zealand was Australia's largest source of visitors, accounting for 1.2 million trips or one in five visitors, but China had overtaken Britain, the United States and Japan to bag the number two spot.