After the pandemic shock, tourists from India and Russia had played a significant role in the recovery of Maldives tourism, a sector that contributes almost 70 percent of the total government revenue
Despite a drop in the numbers of tourists coming from Russia, tourist flow to the Maldives is going up steadily, increasing in February by around 13 percent in comparison to a month earlier. However, the effects of the distant war may be felt soon as Russia and Ukraine accounted for almost 20 percent of the archipelago’s total tourists.
In the last week of February, after the conflict began in Ukraine, the share of Russian tourists dropped to around 13.7 percent from the earlier 15 percent. A total of 149,008 tourists visited the Maldives in February, according to the data released by the Maldives’ Ministry of Tourism last week.
So far, as per official data, there has been a welcome increase of around 48 percent increase in the tourist inflow this year to the South Asia archipelago known worldwide for its luxury tourism.
After the pandemic shock, tourists from India and Russia had played a significant role in the recovery of Maldives tourism, a sector that contributes almost 70 percent of the total government revenue. In 2020, the Maldives' economy shrunk by almost 30 percent.
Significantly, harsh punitive sanctions on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine are expected to have a ripple on the Maldives’ tourism industry. Travel agencies are reporting the cancelation of several bookings, effects of which will be felt soon in the coming months, reported Sun news.
Officials are now focussing on targeting alternate markets to bridge potential losses that may come up due to a decrease in the number of Russian tourists. China, the top market for outbound travelers, hasn’t opened its borders since the pandemic began in February 2020.