HOTELS & TOURISM | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Chart of the Day: Why did tourist spending slide in 2015?

Hotels and integrated resorts reported lower revenue.

Singapore missed its tourism receipts target in 2015, latest statistics from the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) show.

Tourist spending dropped to $22 billion in 2015, marking a decline from $23.6 billion in 2014 and $23.5 billion in 2013.

According to STB, the decline was mainly on back of weak business travel demand, particularly from key markets of Indonesia, Malaysia, and Australia.

Tourism receipts for most industries declined during the year, STB data show. Accomodation revenue dropped by 14% during the year, marking the largest decline among major tourism items. Accomodation revenue makes up 21% of Singapore's overall tourism receipts.

Meanwhile, earnings from sightseeing, entertainment and gaming dropped by 11% last year, mainly on back of lower revenue reported by integrated resorts. This cluster makes up 24% of Singapore's overall tourism receipts.

Tourist spending on other major items also dropped. Shopping revenue dropped by 7%, while spending on other tourism receipt components—including expenditure on airfares on Singapore-based carriers, port taxes, local transportation, business, medical, education and
transit visitors—dropped by 4%.

Of all the major components, only food and beverage revenue rose during the year. F&B revenue rose by 1%, making up 10% of Singapore's overall tourism receipts.

For 2016, STB forecasts tourism receipts to be in the range of S$22.0 to $22.4 billion (0 – 2%) and international visitor arrivals in the range of 15.2 to 15.7 million (0 – 3%).

"Global economic growth may be hampered by the slower growth momentum of the Chinese and US economies as well as uncertainties such as ongoing reforms in China and the impact of the normalisation of the US monetary conditions. Increasing regional competition will also pose challenges to Singapore's tourism sector. At the same time, Singapore remains poised to benefit from the projected growth in outbound travel in the Asia Pacific region3. The pipeline for business events also continues to be strong," the STB said.

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