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Japan expects a record 31m foreign visitors this year

Attracting 40m tourists by 2020 'within reach,' says chief cabinet secretary

The Tsurugaoka Hachimangu shrine in Kanagawa Prefecture is a popular destination for tourists from abroad. The number of visitors to Japan hit a record 28.69 million in 2017. (Photo by Keimei Arashida)

TOKYO -- Japan is expected to attract more than 31 million foreign visitors this year, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said on Sunday, touting a tourism figure that easily tops the record 28.69 million arrivals in 2017.

"The target of welcoming 40 million visitors in 2020 is fully within reach," Suga said during a speech in the southern city of Fukuoka, touching on the government's goal for the year that Tokyo will host the Summer Olympics and Paralympics.

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