Israel enjoyed another unprecedented year of incoming tourism in 2019, the Tourism Ministry announced on Sunday, with approximately 4.55 million tourists visiting the Jewish state.Breaking annual records for a third consecutive year, tourist entries into Israel increased by 11% compared to 2018, when 4,120,800 foreign visitors arrived in the country.Incoming tourism during the past 12 months has injected approximately NIS 23 billion ($6.65b.) into the Israeli economy, the ministry said.”More than 4.5 million tourists visited Israel in 2019. This year, too, we have broken a new record in tourist arrivals,” said Tourism Minister Yariv Levin.”This historic achievement is a direct result of the ongoing revolution in marketing Israel around the world, led by the Israel Ministry of Tourism, in infrastructure development, incentives for international airlines to open new routes into the country and collaborations with the world’s leading tourism agents,” Levin said.”Incoming tourism contributes to the development of the periphery and the economy and I am proud to lead this.”The leading source countries for incoming tourism between January and November 2019 were the United States, with almost 890,000 visitors, followed by France (338,200), Russia (296,000), Germany (268,900) and Britain (218,700).Tourist entries from China soared by 51% compared to 2018, with 144,400 visitors arriving in Israel.”This is the third consecutive year that we have broken the record for incoming tourism to Israel, and this year we have broken the threshold of 4.5 million tourists a year,” said Tourism Ministry director-general Amir Halevi.”These excellent statistics are the result of a professional and marketing revolution that we have led in recent years. The Two Sunny Cities. One Break campaign has been very successful in promoting Jerusalem and Tel Aviv as city destinations and now we are turning our attention to developing additional tourism products, mainly the Negev and Arava.”We see the greatest potential in developing these products and increasing the number of tourists and economic growth in the entire region.”The number of nights spent by tourists in hotels is expected to reach approximately 12.1 million in 2019, compared with 11.6 million in 2018 – an increase of 4.4%. A more modest increase was also identified among Israelis staying overnight in hotels, rising by 1.2% to 13.7 million nights in 2019, compared to 13.6 million in 2018.Notable increases in overnight stays were identified in Tiberias (18%), Tel Aviv (9%) and Jerusalem (8%). Encouraging figures were also published by the Israel Airports Authority on Sunday when Ramon Airport, located 18 km. north of Eilat, welcomed its one millionth arrival since opening in January 2019. The landmark visitor was a tourist arriving onboard a Lufthansa flight from Frankfurt.The NIS 1.7 billion ($460 million) airport, named in memory of Ilan and Assaf Ramon, has replaced the Eilat and Ovda airports serving both domestic and an increasing number of international flights.