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2016 saw a 63% growth on 2015 in the Chinese market

Date Published: Thursday, May 11, 2017 Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development is participating for the first time in the China World Travel Market in Shanghai. This move underlines Sharjah’s dedication to developing new tourism markets. The China World Travel Market will take place from 10 to 12 May in Shanghai and is one of the leading travel and tourism fairs in China, attracting more than 800 exhibitors from the region, Asia and the rest of the world. HE Khalid Jassim Al Midfa, SCTDA Chairman in his comments said “this participation is part of our promotional strategy for the emirate which aims to firmly position the emirate in the world’s largest outbound markets for tourists”. He went on to note that “Sharjah offers a special product to its Chinese visitors with its exciting arts and culture scene and upscale shopping malls”. The Chairman underlined “the emirate is clearly a favourite destination among Chinese tourists as shown by the annual statistics issued by the Authority. 2016 saw the hotel facilities in the emirate receive more than 86,000 Chinese guests, a 63 % increase from 2015, when the emirate welcomed 52,000 guests. The Authority now aims for over 75 % growth as a key target in its 2017 growth programme”. Al Midfa said “SCTDA is keen to strengthen its position in the Chinese market and build further on the benefits presented through the new Chinese tourists visas on arrival, which has helped increase the numbers of Chinese visitors across the emirate in recent years”. The authority has a new representative office, based in Beijing but servicing the whole of Eastern China. They have been invaluable in planning a full schedule of high level meetings with key tourism operators and have organized a highly targeted workshop during the visit. The Authority is confident that this event will be a significant milestone in promoting Sharjah proactively to achieve its ambitious plans for growth in this market. SCTDA have been running promotional campaigns and workshops in China, including exhibiting in the well-known COTTM as well as a very successful promotional tour in the cities of Guangzhou, Chengdu and Hong Kong at the end of last year. Additionally, in conjunction with Air Arabia a workshop for trade in Urumqi. The Authority has also focused its efforts on the Chinese DMCs and run successful local workshops for a number of Chinese travel companies based within the Emirate. The Chairman made a final reference to an award nomination by CTW in which the Authority has been nominated for a Chinese Tourist Welcome Award 2017 recognising its dedicated engagement with the Chinese market, clearly underlying the efforts being made. The Authority has been included as a result of translating the Sharjah Tourism website and printed materials into Chinese. The Authority heads a delegation from the Emirate of Sharjah which includes representatives from Sheraton, Golden Tulip, Hilton, Copthorne, Radisson Blu, Ramada, Cozmo Travel, EPAA (Environment and Protected Areas Authority ), SATA and Royal Tulip Act.