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Tourism ministry considers boosting numbers of Chinese tourists

The ministry will be setting up its first office in China in Beijing very soon, besides conducting roadshows in three or four Chinese cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan and Guangzhou next month.

, ET Bureau|
Jul 28, 2018, 04.30 PM IST
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“We are opening our office in Beijing very soon. We will conduct our roadshows in China from August 28 till September 1,” said Alphons.
NEW DELHI: India is keen to attract more travellers from China and is hopeful of boosting their arrivals to 14.4 million in five years with a slew of measures which may include more promotional events and Mandarin-speaking guides.

Tourism Minister KJ Alphons told ET the ministry will be setting up its first office in China in Beijing very soon, besides conducting roadshows in three or four Chinese cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan and Guangzhou next month.

“We are opening our office in Beijing very soon. We will conduct our roadshows in China from August 28 till September 1,” said Alphons. “We will have to have continuous events in China to attract people. We should aim for 10% of the 144 million Chinese tourists. This can be achieved in five years if we make concerted efforts.”

The number of Chinese visitors in India is rising but is nowhere close to the share of other markets. India received about 247,000 Chinese tourists last year—a marginal decline from about 251,000 in 2016.

Alphons cited Dubai’s strategy for increasing its share of the burgeoning Chinese tourism market. “Like Dubai, for instance. In three years, their Chinese visitor numbers went up by 150%. Dubai did about 40 promotions in China. They have four offices in China and they have appointed about 300 mandarin speaking guides,” he said.

In April 2018, Bangladesh had the highest share of foreign tourist arrivals in India in at 24.32%, followed by the US (11.21%), the UK (9.14%), Sri Lanka (3.48%), Australia (3.33%), Malaysia (3.06%), China (2.62%), Canada (2.53%), Germany (2.48%), France (2.33%), Japan (2.22%), Russian Federation (2.07%), Thailand (1.70%), Afghanistan (1.65%), and Nepal (1.64%).

The same month, China was the third biggest market to avail of the e-tourist visa facility at 5.8%, after the UK (16.3%), and the US (11.0%).

In 2016, China had moved two positions up to 9th place in the list of top tourist generating countries for India, with a 2.85% share in total arrivals. From 1,371 arrivals in 1981, Chinese tourist arrivals grew to 251,313 in 2016 at a CAGR of 16.1%, as per statistics released by the ministry of tourism.

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