All of which deserves some explanation. CNTA (which is the China National Tourism Administration), during a tourism conference in Hangzhou, said that COTRI ( which stands for China Outbound Tourism Research Institute but it had slipped your mind, just for the moment) predicts that a positive development in the coming months if swine flu does not turn nasty.
Li Renzhi, Director-General of the Department of Supervision and Management of CNTA, in his presentation, said that statistics show that the global economic downturn had only a limited impact on the numbers of Mainland Chinese crossing the border.
What did the damage was the swine flu scare which brough outbound travel to 3.5 million and less per month in May and June 2009.
With the swine flu not as yet apparently resulting in any fatal infection, the figures for July (3.9 million) and especially for August (4.7 million) are already indicating a strong rebound.
Wolfgang Arlt, seen above, or to give him his full and splendid title Prof. Dr. rer. pol. Wolfgang Georg Arlt, FRGS, director of COTRI, is slightly more optimistic: “By listening to the latest market reports from popular destinations for Chinese travellers like Hong Kong, Macao, Thailand and Malaysia during the UNWTO/PATA conference in Hangzhou, all reporting bouncing back to growth in recent months, China should still be able to achieve a positive growth rate for its outbound market in 2009."
Focus on Travel News reports that if visits to SARs of Hong Kong and Macao are deducted, the number of real Chinese outbound tourists in the first two quarters of 2009 has progressed into 9.16 million, a remarkable 11.5% leap over the same period of 2008.