The China National Tourism Administration (CNTA) released its full-year report on the country’s tourist industry for 2009.
It shows that tourist arrivals fell by 3.0% year-on-year (y-o-y) in 2009, to total 126.6 million. This was a decline from the 143 million arrivals registered in 2008.
Given the adverse economic environment, particularly the global economic downturn, which weighed heavily on foreign tourism arrivals, and the outbreak of the H1N1 virus (swine flu) in China, this decline is much smaller than might be expected.
More positively, the government’s efforts to increase domestic tourism appear to have paid off, compensating to some extent for the downturn in foreign arrivals.
OfficialSpin reports domestic tourist visits rose by an impressive 15% y-o-y, to 1.9bn in 2009, while domestic tourism revenues rose to $185bn, a 9% y-o-y increase.