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Soaking up some Spanish sun

Tourists sunbathe after cooling off in a pool of the Guadalevin river on a hot summer day below the Puente Nuevo (New Bridge) (rear) in Ronda, near Malaga, southern Spain, July 4, 2013. The Puente Nuevo is 120 metres (390 feet) high and the gorge of the river divides the city of Ronda. (REUTERS/Jon Nazca)

Soaking up some Spanish sun

Sunseekers spurning unrest in Egypt and Turkey flocked to Spain in record numbers last month, setting the country up for its best-ever year for visitors and giving a boost to the ailing economy. "It is very likely that 2013 will be the best year historically for tourism," Industry Minister Jose Manuel Soria told a news conference on Monday, adding that estimates for the fourth quarter were positive.

Tourism contributed over 5 percent of Spain's economy or GDP in 2012 and provided around 900,000 jobs, according to Euromonitor, in a country where one in four is out of work, meaning a boost to tourist figures should be good news as other sectors flag. (Reuters)