Sanya’s efforts to build itself into a world-class tourist destination encountered a setback last year as fewer foreigners visited.

With the flocks of domestic tourists to the city, the number of foreign visitors dropped by 14.6% year-on-year to 295,700 in the first three quarters of 2014.

Statistics showed that the number of overseas tourists from Sanya account for less than 5% of the total tourist arrivals in Hainan since 2010.

According to local travel agents, fiercer regional competition and lack of international flights and special tourism products are the main factors for the decline.

Mr. Tang Sixian, the Vice Director of the Sanya Tourism Development Commission, said declining international tourist numbers show that Sanya must make greater efforts to attract visitors, and he suggested improving supporting facilities to help.

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