There were 1044 international arrivals into the country in the first quarter of 2022.
The National Statistics Office released the first quarter of International Arrivals Statistics for this year on Wednesday 25th May 2022.
Government Statistician Douglas Kimi said the 1044 total arrivals recorded in the first quarter is a decrease of 11.1% compared to the previous quarter (4th quarter 2021).
But he said compared to the same quarter a year ago, an increase of 28.4% was recorded.
“Returning residents made up 72.5% of arrivals for first quarter 2022.
“This was followed by Visitors with 26.3% of arrivals and the remaining 1.0% were Intending residents.”
Mr Kimi said visitor arrivals for the first quarter decreased by 34.7% to 275 visitors, compared to the fourth quarter 2021 figure of 421 visitors.
However, there was an increase of 113.2% in visitor arrivals from first quarter 2021 to first quarter 2022.
Arrivals by country of residence for the first quarter 2022 showed that Australia (50.0%) recorded the largest group of visitors to the Solomon Islands.
There was an increase 39.6% to 275 Australian visitors compared to the fourth quarter of 2021 figure of 197.
The next largest group of visitors were from Papua New Guinea (32.0%) followed by Unite States of America (5.6%), United Kingdom (4.0%), Other Country (2.2%), Netherland (1.8%), Not Stated (1.1%), New Zealand and Germany (0.9%), Japan and Vanuatu (0.4%), and Other Europe, Other Asia, Italy and China (0.2%).
At the same time, visitor arrivals by month showed that March recorded the highest number of arrivals in the first quarter of 2022 with 143 visitors.
This was followed by month of February with a total of 86 visitors and January the least with 46 visitors.
Total visitor arrivals to Solomon Islands over the past years showed an increasing trend up till end of 2019 when the trend began to decline due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and the subsequent travel restrictions imposed by Solomon Island Government in March 2020 onwards.
Recent directives from the government confirm that border restrictions will be lifted and that international and domestic airports will be opened on July 1, 2022 and thus the NSO expects to see the trend in arrivals into the country slowly pick up again.