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Swiss spending more on holidays

Foreign visitors are spending more money in Switzerland and the Swiss themselves are digging deeper in their pockets when going abroad, according to figures released on Friday by the Federal Statistics Office.

Foreign tourists spent SFr11.7 billion ($6.84 billion) in Switzerland last year, an increase of SFr135 million over 1998 ( 1.2 per cent).

In a communiqué, the Office said that Swiss holiday spending abroad in 1999 rose to SFr10.4 billion, up SFr484 million from the previous year ( 4.9 per cent).

The lion’s share of foreign spending in Switzerland went on hotels and spas (SFr5.7 billion), while there was a two per cent drop in spending on stays in rented holiday homes and camping sites. Receipts were SFr1.1 million.

The Office says the rise in foreign tourist revenues in Switzerland was more a result of increases in food and souvenir buying than in spending on hotels.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR