SPENDING by 25 million tourists visiting the Valencia region during 2016 reached almost €10.8 billion, according to new official figures.
Statistics published in the yearbook Tourism in the Communidad Valenciana 2016 reveal the region’s important tourist sector contributed 13.2 per cent to Gross Domestic Product and represented 14.4 per cent of the job market.
The guide also shows the rising demand for holidays in Valencia; the numbers of foreign visitors rose by 16.6 per cent and domestic holidaymakers by 5.7 per cent. International tourists spent 14.9 per cent more than 12 months earlier, Spanish spending was up a more modest 6.5 per cent.
And the government figures, the increase in visitors both foreign and domestic has led to a corresponding rise in the number of jobs in the sector, some 12.6 per cent.
Francesc Colomer said: “These results show the strength and consistency of the Valencian tourist sector and we must continue working daily with all the tourist agencies to strengthen our competiveness – both now and in the future – as a tourist destination.
“There is a need for strategic planning, training of workers, improving the quality of services and using innovative and specialist promotion. These are essential tools to build a more sustainable, ethical, responsible and participatory tourist destination.”
The review showed the number of overnight stays in the region’s hotels reached record levels at 28.2 million; an increase of 6.7 per cent.
This was also reflected in the total growth of alternative accommodation. Apartments, campsites, and rural bed and breakfasts accounted for 18.5 million overnight stays; again said to be a record and an increase of 13 per cent on 12 months earlier.