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Is China Asia`s no 1 outbound destination?

The global tourism industry has been anxiously following up on the news from Asia…

The global tourism industry has been anxiously following up on the news from Asia. Will China prove to be the new outbound market with unlimited potential that everybody has been waiting for?

On the 16th of September 2004 Xinhua News Agency reported that for the first 7 months of the year, the outbound expenditure of China has increased by 63.7% compared to the same period in 2003, making the total number of departures to date over 16 million.

Will that be enough to surpass Japan? Assuming the figures quoted by CNTA (China National Tourism Administration) through Xinhua are correct, China will be the first country to set a precedent in the recent global tourism industry statistics in registering over 30 million departures by the end of 2004 or, looked at another way, an increase of 7 million from 2003 to 2004.

The average per capita GDP in China has expanded over US$1,000 and the total foreign currency savings of Chinese residents have been reported to be US$90 billion.

At the end of 2003 only 29 destinations were granted ADS (Approved Destinations Status) by the Chinese government. Today there are 54 destinations worldwide accessible to Chinese residents as tourist destinations. Following the European Union ADS agreement, the first Chinese group arrived on European soil on the 3rd of September at Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris. France is expecting to receive over 600,000 Chinese visitors in the following year. Chinese are eager to explore the newly opened possibilities of visiting cities they have never been able to visit before. According to IPS (International Passenger Survey), 68,000 Chinese citizens visited UK in 2003 with GBP 127 million spent.

The unexpected boom in the departures from China created new opportunities for event organisers worldwide. The first outbound Travel and Tourism event for China was launched in 2004. The British based International exhibitions operator – Rising Star Exhibitions is the organiser of the first ever outbound event for China dedicated exclusively to the travel trade. The exhibition – Beijing International Travel and Tourism Market, 20 – 23 April 2005, has already received unprecedented support amongst the international travel trade. The organisers expect visitor numbers to exceed 30,000 professionals from all across China.

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Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.