BANGKOK, Aug 18 (Reuters) - International tourist arrivals in Thailand rose 4.8 percent in July from a year earlier, led by visitors from China, Malaysia, Laos, Korea and India, the tourism and sports ministry said on Friday.
Foreign arrivals stood at 3.1 million in July, the ministry said in a statement. For the seven-month period, arrivals were 20.4 million, up 4.47 percent.
The government expects about 35 million tourists this year.
Tourism accounts for 12 percent of Thailand’s economy, and has been a rare bright spot for Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy, whose growth still lags its peers. (Reporting by Pracha Hariraksapitak; Writing by Orathai Sriring; Editing by Sunil Nair)