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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - The UAE had the second highest hotel occupancy in the world last year behind China, the country's economy ministry said.
Occupancy was 54.7 percent and 12.8 million guests were received by UAE hotels, it said, citing data from the World Tourism Organization and the Emirates Tourism Council.
The performance reflected how fast the country recovered from the pandemic’s impact, according to Ahmad Belhoul Al-Falasi, the UAE minister of state for entrepreneurship and SMEs.
“Despite the tremendous challenges it brought onto the industry, the pandemic also created new opportunities for domestic tourism, with a surge in demand recorded over the past year, especially during the holidays and vacation season, and some establishments even reporting full occupancy,” he said.
Guests in the UAE spent 54.2 million nights in 1,089 establishments, according to the data, with an average stay of 3.7 nights per person. Domestic tourism alone contributed about $11.2 billion to the country’s economy in 2020.
Global occupancy rate d to 37 percent in the same period, while the Middle East region recorded about 43 percent occupancy.
China, with the highest rate, recorded 58 percent.
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