SEJONG, July 4 (Korea Bizwire) – The number of foreign cruise tourists visiting South Korea nearly doubled in the first six months of 2016, with the number expected to reach 1.5 million at the end of the year, the maritime ministry said Monday.
Some 724,000 foreigners arrived in the country on cruise ships over the January-June period, up 88 percent from 385,000 tallied a year ago, according to the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries.
For all of 2016, 1.5 million cruise tourists are expected to flock to the country’s shores, with 848 ships to land at the South Korean ports of Jeju, Busan and Incheon, up from 409 a year earlier.
The ministry expects the number to reach 2 million in 2017 and hit 3 million in 2020.
Recently, the South Korean government has made efforts to strengthen its overseas marketing to convince more cruise visitors to visit South Korea and invite more cruise liners to enter the country.
The cruise industry is one of the fastest growing sectors in Asia, with the number of people embarking on a cruise ship tour growing, especially from China.