Tourism ministers from Turkey and China signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) Friday, December 14, confirming their dedication to boosting tourism traffic between the two nations and making the Turkey-China line an ‘official tourist route,’ reported the official Anatolia news agency.
Turkish Tourism Minister Mustafa Tasar announced his ministry allocated one million dollars to promotional activities in China, including the establishment of a Turkish tourism office in the Chinese Republic. "We plan to attract 500,000 Chinese to Turkey next year and two million by 2005," the head of Turkey's travel agency association (TURSAB), Basaran Ulusoy stated. Only 21,500 Chinese toured Turkey in 2000, according to TURSAB figures.
The World Tourism Organization expects China to become the world's largest tourism market within the next two decades, drawing the highest number of tourists and also sending the most travelers abroad. In 2000, 6.25 million Chinese traveled abroad, according to the chairman of the Chinese National Tourism Administration (CNTA), He Guangwei. During the same period 80 million people visited China, bringing the country’s tourism revenues to $1.9 billion.
In September, Turkey has been added to the list of tourist destinations that the Beijing government recommends to its populous nation. Turkey's Aegean and Mediterranean coasts are a popular holiday destination for Europeans and Ankara has campaigned intensively in recent months to get a place on the Chinese’s’ list of favored vacation destinations, reported AFP.
Guangwei indicated that the Chinese usually select Thailand and Russia as their vacationing spots. However, with the development of transportation and services, he asserted more Chinese are likely to visit Turkey. — (menareport.com)
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )