MINSK, 6 April (BelTA) – New sightseeing tours will be developed for Chinese tourists in Belarus. Belarusian Deputy Sports and Tourism Minister Mikhail Portnoi made the relevant statement as he met with representatives of the Beijing Travel Agency and the China Youth Tourism Agency from the city of Chongqing, the ministry's press service told BelTA.
A Chinese delegation led by Director of the Beijing Travel Agency Nan Zhao came to Belarus to participate in the international tourism fair Leisure 2018 (Otdykh 2018) and to hold negotiations with Belarusian partners.
The year 2018 has been declared the Year of Belarusian Tourism in China. The declaration should bring about more opportunities for travelers and enable the most advantageous conditions for them. According to Mikhail Portnoi, Belarus' tourism potential is not fully open to Chinese citizens. A number of events will take place in Belarus this year in order to attract Chinese tourists. They will include fact-finding tours, the development of new sightseeing tours that target specific audiences, and many other things, said the official.
After noting the importance of interregional cooperation Mikhail Portnoi pointed out that virtually all the regions of Belarus had signed the relevant agreements with Chinese provinces. “Belarusian tourists take pleasure in visiting China, which is famed for its rich history, culture, and a large number of tourist attractions, including those inscribed into the UNESCO cultural heritage list,” he added.
Representatives of the Chinese side also believe that not all the opportunities are used to expand mutually beneficial contacts. Although there is an interest in increasing tourist numbers on both sides. There are also certain problems relating to the lack of reliable information about China and Belarus, some complicated visa issuance procedures, and the lack of direct air service between Minsk and Chongqing.
Mikhail Portnoi said he was confident that this year's events represent only the beginning of large and serious work on the part of professionals of the Belarusian and Chinese tourism industries. The work is supposed to result in stronger friendship and trust between the countries and larger tourist flows.