Brasilia, Brazil, 4 July – In 2006 Portugal maintained its position as the country to supply the third-largest amount of tourists to Brazil, with a total of 312,521 visitors, behind Argentina and the United States, officials said in Brasilia Tuesday.
Brazil’s Tourism Agency (Embratur) said that Brazil received a total of 5.06 million tourists last year, a fall of 6.3 percent against 2005.
One of the main reasons for the fall was the crisis undergone by Brazil’s national airline Varig, which practically closed all it flights abroad.
Spending by tourists rose 10.2 percent to US$4.3 billion in the period, as a result of more visitors with greater spending power.
The ranking of countries that send most tourists to Brazil was led by Argentina (921,061) and the USA (721,633), according to Embratur.
There are currently Portuguese tourism investments underway in Brazil totaling some US$280 million until 2009, namely in the northeast, led by the Pestana, Vila Galé, Dorisol and Espírito Santo groups. (macauhub)