The number of foreign visitors to Cambodia in the first eight months of this year increased 18.7 percent over the same period in 2012, hitting 2.7 million, according to figures released by the Cambodian Ministry of Tourism.

Kong Sopheareak, chief of the ministry' Planning and Statistics Department, said that the number of tourists has continued to rise despite the ongoing political dispute between parties after the July general elections.

He attributed the increase to the country’s efforts in promoting tourism in the recent past.

However, the official also noted that in order to compete with regional countries, Cambodia needs to pay more attention to adjusting the price of tourism services while upgrading its infrastructure system and improving the quality of hotels and restaurants.

The majority of foreign holiday-makers to Cambodia in the period were from Vietnam, with almost 585,000 visitors accounting for 21.1 percent of the total, representing a growth of 12.4 percent year-on-year.

Cambodia set a target of attracting 4.1 million tourists in 2013 and 5 million by 2015.-VNA