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The Year of Indian Tourism Kicks off in Beijing in 2015
The opening ceremony of the “Year of Indian Tourism” was held on February 2, 2015.
The Year of Indian Tourism Kicks off in Beijing in 2015
On the afternoon of February 2, 2015, many eminent guests got together in the well-decorated Gem Hall of Raffles Beijing Hotel where one could feel the friendly and festive air. They came here to witness the grand opening ceremony of the “Year of Indian Tourism” in 2015. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi sent congratulation wishes through a video clip and Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang attended and addressed the opening ceremony. Besides, Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, CNTA Chairman Li Jinzao, and Indian Ambassador to China Ashok K. Kanta delivered a speech respectively at the ceremony. Also present in the ceremony were Assistant to Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Liu Jianchao, CNTA Vice Chairman Du Jiang, and India’s Foreign Secretary Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, and other persons. 
Prime Minister Modi warmly congratulated on the opening of the “Year of Indian Tourism” in his video clip. As he noted, India and China, two ancient civilizations, have maintained a good neighbourly relationship for the long term. Their ancient civilizations contributed a lot to the world. The 21st Century will be the Asia Century. India and China will do good for the globe as they always do. In the new age, India will keep consolidating its partnership with China. To this end, the Chinese and Indian people need to travel in each other’s country so as to gain a better mutual understanding. The “Year of Indian Tourism” will kick off in China in 2015. The Chinese tourists are welcome to visit India’s numerous places of interest and experience the marvellous India. 
In his speech, Vice Premier Wang Yang on behalf of the Chinese government extended the congratulations on the opening of the “Year of Indian Tourism” as scheduled. As he said, the organisation of the “Year of Tourism” in each other’s country is an important consensus reached by Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Modi during Mr. Xi’s visit to India last year. Both China and India feature vast land, diverse ecosystems, eye-catching culture and abundant tourism resources. Thanks to the continuously fast-growing national economy and the increasingly improved quality of living for their people, China and India have seen their tourism stepping into a golden age of development. China and India are expected to work together to boost their tourism market on the opportunity the “Year of Indian Tourism”. They will organise a series of high-end and fruitful activities with unique features as their people wish fervently. On the Chinese side, many vigorous efforts will be made so as to help promote India’s tourism in China. A variety of conveniences will be available for the Chinese visitors travelling in India. A tourism cooperation mechanism between the two sides will be established and improved with a view to helping the Indian side stage colourful theme activities which will vividly unfold the ancient, mysterious, vibrant country to the Chinese people. With more Chinese tourists fuelled by the longing for visiting India, the two countries will propel their cooperation in tourism towards a larger scale, a wider range and a higher level. 
In his speech, Minister Sushma Swaraj indicated that the personnel exchanges including tourists would be one of the important ways to build up mutual understanding and trust between India and China. India, in addition to great ancient civilizations, also boasts abundant tourism resources, diverse climate, and unique landscapes in different regions. The Chinese tourists are welcome to visit and get a better understanding of the country. 
Mr. Li Jinzao in his speech extended his congratulations on the success of the opening ceremony on behalf of CNTA and China’s tourism community. As he said, in the view of China’s tourism authority and community, the organisation the “Year of Tourism” in the two countries is not only one of their honoured missions but also an important opportunity to enhance their communication and cooperation in tourism with India. The Chinese side will work together with India to establish a sound cooperation mechanism and try to convene the meeting of the Chinese and Indian tourism ministers in 2015. Meanwhile, to beef up their tourism promotion and publicity efforts, China and India will give each other preferential treatments in terms of media resources, advertising channels, exhibitions, invitation of travel agencies, etc. China would like to invite India to take part in the China International Travel Mart 2015 as the Guest of Honour. In addition, the two sides will develop special touring products that suit the needs of the other country’s visitors and encourage their companies to invest in the other’s tourist attractions/scenic spots, hotels & restaurants, tourist buses and other fields. To improve the level of Indian tourist services, China will help it train more Chinese-speaking tour guides, increase the number of Chinese signs, and provide food and beverage suitable for the Chinese tourists’ preferences. At the same time, measures will be taken in a bid to ensure security of tourists, share information in a timely manner, and give cooperation in visitor insurance and emergency rescue. The convenience brought along by streamlined visa application procedures and sound tourist flights will allow the tourists to feel more comfortable while travelling between the two countries. All of these efforts will make it possible for China and India to further enhance their tourism communication and cooperation in the future. 
Ambassador Kanta in his address mentioned that for China’s huge number of outbound tourists, India, as a modern power and an ancient civilization, is a perfect destination. During the “Year of Indian Tourism”, the Indian tourism authority will promote the country’s image as a tourist destination in many Chinese places, hopes to further expand its cooperation with the Chinese tourism industry, and expects to receive more Chinese tourists.
By touching the starting device, Mr. Wang Yang and Mr. Sushma Swaraj launched the “Year of Indian Tourism”.More than 300 persons from the two countries’ political, tourism and press circles showed up in the opening ceremony. 
The organisation of the “Year of Tourism” in each other’s country is a consensus struck by the state leaders of China and India. During Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to India in September 2014, the Chinese and Indian governments release the Joint Statement of the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of India on Building a Closer Partnership for Development. The Statement declares that “the Year of Indian Tourism will be held in China in 2015 and the Year of Chinese Tourism be held in India in 2016.” In the two years, China and India will work together to step up their tourism promotion and publicity efforts, develop the well-acclaimed touring products and routes by the two countries’ tourists, bring their cooperation in tourism to a larger range and a greater depth, encourage their tourists to travel between them, and turn tourism exchanges into a great part of their strategic partnership.
  Source: CNTA

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