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Number of British tourists in Moscow up 26% in Jan.-Sept.

MOSCOW, November 6 (RIA Novosti) - The number of British tourists flying into Moscow has risen 26% in the first nine months of 2008 has risen 26% year-on-year, to over 116,000 people, a source in Moscow's tourist committee said Thursday.

A total of 92,400 British tourists arrived Moscow in January-September 2007.

The source added that increased cooperation between Moscow and Russia's second largest city of St. Petersburg in the tourism industry could account for the rise in the number of tourists. Russia's two major cities have recently signed an agreement on cooperation in the travel sphere.

Tourism from Britain was boosted in May when an estimated 40,000 fans of English soccer clubs Manchester United and Chelsea came to Moscow for the UEFA Champions League final.

On Monday, Russia will open its stand at the World Travel Market 2008 in London. The exhibit covers 258 square meters (2,777 square feet) and will feature over 50 travel companies, hotels and museums.

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