Setting a new record, the number of Indian and Chinese visitors to Australia has tripled in the last decade despite the Australian dollar going strong.
While the Indian visitors went up from 45,000 to 160,000 between 2002 and 2012, the number of Chinese during the same period increased from 190,000 to 630,000, figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics said today.
"Despite a high Australian dollar, Australia's short term visitor numbers were up by nearly five per cent since 2011 with 6.1 million short trips made to Australia - 270,000 more than we saw in 2011," said Neil Scott, Assistant Director of Demography at the bureau.
While China stands at second place when it comes to short-term arrivals in Australia, India made it to the top-ten list at the last place.
Seven out of the top ten countries whose citizens came to Australia for short-term visit were from Asia. Meanwhile, New Zealand continues to be the source of maximum short-term arrivals.
"New Zealand remains our biggest source of overseas short-term visitor arrivals with 1.2 million trips in 2012 or one in five visitors coming from there, but China is now in second place with one in ten, followed by the UK, the USA and Japan," Scott added.
Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea, Hong Kong and India rounded off the list in that order.
"New South Wales remained the most popular destination with a record 2.3 million overseas visitors in 2012, claiming more than one-third of all short-term visitor arrivals to Australia.
"This was followed by Queensland at one-quarter and Victoria with just over one-fifth," an official release of the Bureau said.
Elaborating about the purpose of these visits, Scott said: "More than two-thirds, or about 4.3 million overseas visitors, came here for holidays or to see friends and family, and the peak age group for short term visitors was 25-29 year olds."