China assures assistance to develop Sri Lanka's tourism industry
Strengthening the long standing ties with Sri Lanka, People’s Republic of China has assured Sri Lanka of further assistance to develop the islands tourism industry and raise the country's living standards by launching various tourism related programs to enhance destination awareness in the Chinese market. Member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China and the Central Committee Liu Yunshan who is currently on a visit to Sri Lanka revealed this at a meeting held at the Prime Minister's Office on Monday 09th . Mr. Liu Yunshan also said that the friendship between the two countries has reached an important landmark at present.
Sri Lankan leaders including Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa and Prime Minister DM Jayaratne were present to the event held for signing three bilateral cooperation agreements of tri-sentimental developments in Sri Lanka including Education, Tourism and Cultural Affairs. Three agreements related to the fields of education, Tourism and Culture have been signed between Sri Lanka and China on this day.
Under the agreement related to the field of Tourism, China will provide professional services of all its media channels and experts in order to develop International level television programmes for tourism industry with producing and publishing Sri Lankan documentaries and articles in all mainstream media in China. They will also grant special cooperation to carry out promotional campaigns in order to create awareness of the Sri Lanka among Chinese travelers. This agreement was signed by the Managing Director of Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau , Mr.Rumy Jauffer and the Chief Editor of China Central Television Mr. Luo Ming at the prime minister’s office on Monday.
This agreement is seen as a timely move to develop tourism industry in Sri Lanka at a juncture where Chinese tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka is on a steady rise, as the country has received a growing number of Chinese tourists during the first seven months of this year, which is a year on year increase of 74%. The latest jump shows encouraging signs as the Government of Sri Lanka to capture a slice out of the growing Chinese outbound tourism market, which during the year 2012 in total stood at 83 million tourists. Sri Lanka Tourism aims towards attracting 2.5 million tourists per annum by year 2016, out of the expected 2.5 million tourists to the country, Sri Lanka is planning to attract 275,000 Chinese travelers by year 2016.