Another push for tourists planned


The government will compile an action plan by July to more than double the annual level of foreign tourists to 18 million in 2016, officials said Tuesday.

“Tourism is a very important growth sector that supports our country’s economic growth and revitalization of local areas,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said at the first meeting of a government panel on promoting tourism that was attended by his whole Cabinet.

In 2012, 8.37 million tourists visited Japan from overseas, recovering the level before the March 2011 disasters.

But it fell short of the government’s target of 9 million partly due to strained ties between Japan and China.