SYDNEY December 20, 2013 – Japan has welcomed 10 millionth visitor to Japan this year on Friday, 20th December at Narita International Airport. According to statistics released by Japan National Tourism Organization - cash1970.info (JNTO) in early December, about 9.5 million visited the country as of the end of November, with the figure reaching 10 million visitors this month.
In 2003, the Japanese government set a target of attracting 10 million visitors a year by 2010. Despite the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami, Japan has bounced back on track and was able to achieve its goal of reaching 10 million visitors per year. The previous annual record was 8.6 million in 2010.
On this occasion that Japan has welcomed 10 millionth visitor, Mr Ryoichi Matsuyama, the President of JNTO commented “as JNTO’s mission is to realize a “tourism-based” nation with expanded inbound tourism, it is our great pleasure to achieve our dream to have reached the goal today?and we wish to offer our heartfelt appreciation to everyone who has helped us by sending visitors to Japan.” He also added that “with the 2020 Tokyo Olympic & Paralympic Games now just over 6 years away, we look forward to further developing Japan’s tourism infrastructure and welcoming many more visitors to Japan in the coming years.”
JNTO estimates that as of the end of November 2013, a total of 214,300 Australians travelled to Japan, an 18.4% increase from 2012.
2013 was a great year for Australian arrivals to Japan, with a strong winter season, especially January 2013, which saw a total of 31,700 Australians visit the country, a record high. The strong Australian dollar and the corresponding weak yen made Japan an attractive and cost effective travel destination for Australians, where they can get more for their dollar. As of December, according to the Reserve Bank of Australia, AUD 1 will buy you JPY91.6.