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4 May 2018

Year of China Tourism in Belarus aims to increase visitor numbers

MINSK, 4 May (BelTA) – The events of the Year of China Tourism in Belarus are aimed at increasing tourist numbers, Director of the Tourism Department of the Belarusian Sport and Tourism Ministry Andrei Molchan said at the presentation of the Year of China Tourism in Belarus and the Year of Belarus Tourism in China held as part of the 22nd international exhibition Mass Media in Belarus on 4 May, BelTA informs. The organizer of the presentation is the Belarusian Telegraph Agency BelTA.

The plan of activities includes about 50 events that will help create the most favorable conditions and develop infrastructure to welcome Chinese tourists. “At present it is important to study the requirements of the guests in order to offer a wide range of services,” said Andrei Molchan.

Belarus is developing navigation in Chinese for Belarusian cities. Tourist agencies have developed an instruction booklet for Chinese tourists. The booklet contains useful information about transport, restaurant chains, telephone phones for enquiries. Every oblast of Belarus has concluded partnership agreements with the provinces of China, which will help increase visitor numbers, Andrei Molchan said. The regional airports announced their readiness to receive flights from China. A direct flight between Minsk and Beijing has already been launched.

Belarus is also working on the ways to provide tourists from China with the opportunity to use Chinese payment systems in the country. The work is underway on the standardization of hotels in accordance with Chinese requirements. The Minsk Hotel and The Beijing Hotel in the Belarusian capital have been certified, which means that they have Chinese-speaking staff and Chinese “welcome programs”.

According to Andrei Molchan, the number of Chinese-speaking guides has been growing. Over 15 of them have passed the necessary certification. He also lauded the level of cooperation in the field of education. Many Chinese students are enrolled in Belarusian universities and visa versa. This creates the potential for tourism development, Andrei Molchan noted.

The parties are also working on the project to set up a Belarusian-Chinese tourism venture. Belarus is set to present its tourism industry at events and exhibitions in China. In May alone Belarus will take part in three expos in China.

These days Belarus is hosting the Chinese journalists on a media tour. In June Belarus will organize a similar tour for Chinese travel operators.

In 2017 Belarus welcomed 3,400 Chinese visitors, twice as many as in 2016, Andrei Molchan informed. However, these are still modest numbers for a country such as China. Therefore a decision was taken to hold the Year of China Tourism in Belarus and the Year of Belarus Tourism in China. Colleagues on their part are also working to promote Belarus’ tourism opportunities in China. The countries have also been working on visa facilitation.

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