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China-EU Tourism Year 2018 Launched in Beijing
Europe is hoping to attract more Chinese tourists to their member countries through "China-EU Tourism Year 2018," which was initiated on Wednesday in Beijing.
Eduardo Santander, executive director of the European Travel Commission,
speaks at a press conference held in Bei-jing to launch
"China-EUTourism Year 2018," Oct. 26, 2016.
 
Europe is hoping to attract more Chinese tourists to their member countries through "China-EU Tourism Year 2018," which was initiated on Wednesday in Beijing.

"China-EU Tourism Year 2018" was declared by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker in July 2016. The initiative is sponsored by the European Travel Commission and "Welcome Chinese" certification organizations, organized by the Select Holding and supported by member countries of the European Commission and the European Travel Commission.

China is now the third most visited countries in the world while the overseas outbound tourism is also booming, with double-digit growth in the past decade.

Eduardo Santander, Executive Director of the European Travel Commission, said at the press conference in Beijing that in 2015 European countries received 10 million Chinese visits. However, this was only 2 percent of Chinese tourists who travelled abroad. This indicated that the EU should do more to attract Chinese visitors and enhance the positive impression of European destinations for Chinese.

Santander added the European countries are still the safest destinations in the world, although they experienced terrorist attacks and other chaos last year.

Besides beautiful urban scenes in Paris, Rome and Budapest, Europe also has many amazing natural wonders as well as cultural heritage recognized by the UNESCO, said Lowri Evans, director general of DG GROW, European Commission. She revealed in her speech at the press conference that the EU is working with the UNESCO to design more tourist routes and connect lesser known but worthwhile scenic spots and attractions.

To support the "China-EU Tourism Year 2018," the EU will provide multilayer business support and assistance, including supporting business summits, holding businesses link-up activities and deepening the involvement of various countries, governments, tourist agencies and private departments. China and the EU also allow investment into each other's tourism sector, in order to promote employment and economic growth, and the two parties will make visa application more convenient.
 
Lowri Evans, director general of DG GROW, European Commission, speaks at a press
conference held in Beijing to launch "China-EU Tourism Year 2018," Oct. 26, 2016.
 
Delegates from the European countries pose for photo at a press conference
held in Beijing to launch "China-EU Tourism Year 2018," Oct. 26, 2016.

Related News in Chinese: 2018中国-欧盟旅游年启动仪式在京召开
  Source: China.org.cn

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