§ David Hamilton
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many overseas visitors came to the United Kingdom in each year from 1998; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Dr. Howells
The number of visits was as follows:
Thousand Year Visits from overseas 1998 25,745 1999 25,394 2000 25,209
Visit numbers fell slightly between 1998 and 2000, but overall these were strong years for inbound tourism to the UK, with a record level of spending by overseas visitors in 2000 of £12.8 billion, compared to £12.7 billion in 1998 and £12.5 billion in 1999. Figures for the full year 2001 are not yet available.