TOKYO: The Japanese government maintained its goal to increase the number of visitors from overseas to 60 million in 2030, the 2021 white paper on tourism showed Tuesday.
In the white paper, approved at the day’s cabinet meeting, the government said that it will start encouraging trips in small groups from this fiscal year in order to gradually bring back foreign visitors after they decreased sharply due to the spread of the novel coronavirus.
In 2020, the number of visitors to Japan plummeted 87.1 percent from the previous year to 4.12 million, failing to reach the government’s goal of 40 million set for the year.
The government in the white paper stressed that it will prepare a travel environment that is safe and secure for both foreign visitors and local areas welcoming such people.
The number of Japanese who went on domestic trips last year fell 50 pct to around 293.41 million. In July-December, the proportion of people who took a trip within their residing prefectures in the country rose by 7.0 percentage points and the percentage of those who took a two-day trip went up 12.4 points.
The government said that roughly 87.81 million people used its “Go To Travel” subsidy campaign for trips of at least two days until the program, which was first introduced in July last year, was suspended in December in the same year.
The white paper said that the government will consider what to do with the program, based on the infection situation.