Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is expecting visitor arrivals to Singapore for 2020 to fall by about 25 to 30 per cent, due to the novel coronavirus outbreak (nCoV).
Chinese tourists account for around 20 per cent of Singapore’s total international visitor arrivals, with about 3.6 million visitors to the country in 2019, according to STB.
In addition to the drop in tourists from China, STB also expects knock-on effects. Visitor arrivals from other key source markets are also expected to fall due to lower travel confidence globally, STB said in a press statement on Tuesday, February 11.
“We believe the situation this year will be comparable to the situation we faced in 2003 during SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) – and quite possibly worse,” said Keith Tan, Chief Executive Officer, STB.
A Tourism Recovery Action Task Force has been set up by the Singapore government to deal with the effects of the virus outbreak. Comprising members from the public and private sectors, the task force will be mapping out recovery strategies and plans for tourism in Singapore.
“Their work will include identifying opportunities arising from the nCoV crisis, driving and implementing measures to instill confidence in Singapore’s tourism establishments, as well as co-creating and initiating recovery plans,” STB said in its statement.