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By José Antonio Perez
2016, Puerto Peñasco surpassed the goal of welcoming more than 2 million visitors, which led to an economic influx of at least 2 billion pesos, detailed Héctor Vázquez del Mercado, President of the local Convention and Visitors Bureau (OCV).
Vázquez del Mercado explained, according to available statistics through the second to last week of 2016, Puerto Peñasco received 2,150,000 visitors during the year, which is a 10% increase over 2015.
This increase was particularly evident at the US-Mexico border crossing at Sonoyta-Lukeville, where the US Department of Homeland Security confirmed vehicle crossings had risen 9%, resulting in 280,833 cars for the year.
Vázquez noted these results have positioned Puerto Peñasco as the most important tourist destination in Sonora for the first time, generating nearly 35% of tourism resources in the state.
The OCV President noted there has been favorable growth in tourism over the past three years, which has translated into an increase of over 35%, including the 10% increase just in 2016.
Vázquez del Mercado acknowledged 2017 will be full of challenges given variables in macro-economics, which may have an impact. However, as 75% of tourism to the area comes from abroad, there are more pros than cons and expectations are for 5% to 10% continued growth over 2016.