Beijing’s International Travel and Tourism Market welcomed 448 hand-picked hosted buyers from the top tour operators and travel agencies in China to do business and network with international tourism professionals. Almost 3,000 foreign buyers attended the fair.
During the fair, the China National Tourism Administration announced that in 2005, we saw 31 million departures and in the first two months of 2006, we’ve already seen departures of 5.7 million, that’s an increase of 15.3%. With the country’s strong economic growth and improving living standards, we can see that outbound tourism has great potential.
Geoffrey Lipman, special advisor to the United Nations World Tourism Organization delivered a keynote speech on the first day. He said “the Chinese economic dynamo will continue and the wealth this creates will fuel new travelers with all of the latent curiosity to see a world (that) beckons to them. With access opened up through special bilateral accords, there are now more than 70 signed ADS providing platforms for two way tourism development.”
Hot topics on the conference agenda included future trends and the effects of Chinese tourism on overseas destinations. A panel session also focused on ways to penetrate the Chinese outbound travel market.