Haifa has recovered from the tourism slump caused by the Second Lebanon War and for the first time ever is outdoing the national average in its hotel occupancy rates, reports Yediot Haifa. New figures show that in the first quarter of 2008, hotel occupancy rates in Haifa stood at 65 percent, compared with the national average of 61 percent. The city announced plans to build 10 more hotels. According to the report, there has been a 30% rise in tourism in Haifa recently following a joint campaign by the municipality and Local Hotels Association that was aimed at identifying the needs of Israeli and foreign tourists. As part of the campaign, the city is spending NIS 600,000 on advertising local attractions. "Tourism is the oxygen line of our city," Mayor Yona Yahav said at the official presentation of the figures. "We at City Hall decided, immediately after the war, to place tourism at the head of our priorities. The municipality, with the assistance of the Tourism Ministry and tourism organizations, invested NIS 10 million in encouraging tourism â€¦ I am happy to announce that this effort has borne fruit and the rise is expected to continue into 2009." Yahav announced that the 10 more hotels planned for the city would add some 2,500 hotel rooms to the 1,500 currently available in Haifa.