The number of nights spent in French hotels by foreign tourists in July was down 10 percent from last year. Visitors from outside Europe have been deterred by recent Islamist militant attacks.
High-spending visitors from the United States, Asia and the Gulf, in particular, had been discouraged by the attacks, the country’s tourism minister Matthias Fekl said in an interview with Sunday newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche.
Tourists from European countries, who make up about 80 percent of visitors, were still coming to France, he said. The first six months of the year had also seen a 10 percent decline in the number of stays compared to a year ago, Fekl told the newspaper.
The impact was most keenly felt in Paris and the region around the capital, with tourist stays in other regions showing a two percent increase in the January-June period, he said.
France’s tourism industry has been suffering since Islamic State gunmen killed 130 people in an attack in Paris last year. It was dealt further blows in July when a militant killed 85 people by ramming a truck into crowds in the French Riviera resort of Nice. Two weeks later, two men killed a priest in a small town in Normandy.