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Maldives Records 33% Decline in Indian Tourists Amid Diplomatic Tensions

Amid deteriorating bilateral relations between New Delhi and Male, the Maldives has experienced a significant drop in Indian tourist arrivals. According to data from the Maldives tourism ministry reported by Male-based Adhadhu, there has been a 33% decrease in Indian tourists visiting the country compared to the previous year.

In March 2023, over 41,000 Indian tourists visited Maldives, whereas in March 2024, the number plummeted to just 27,224, marking a notable decline. The primary factor attributed to this decrease is the tourism campaign initiated by the Indian government, encouraging citizens to explore the Lakshadweep islands instead.

Previously, India held the position of the second largest source of tourism for Maldives, commanding a 10% market share. However, due to diplomatic tensions between the two nations, India has now slipped to the sixth place with a reduced 6% market share.

Conversely, China has witnessed a surge in tourist arrivals in Maldives, reflecting the strengthening ties between Beijing and Male. In 2024, China recorded over 54,000 tourist visits to the country, further solidifying its position as a significant contributor to Maldives’ tourism industry.

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