Ministry of Tourism to open India Tourism Office in Beijing


India Tourism Office in Beijing will be inaugurated on April 7, 2008 by the Union Minister for Tourism & Culture Smt. Ambika Soni. This will be the 14th overseas office for Ministry of Tourism. The India tourism Office in Beijing is being inaugurated as per agreed plan of action for India-China Friendship Year Celebrations during 2007. Earlier, Government of China had set up a China National Tourist Office in New Delhi in August 2007. The opening of India Tourism Office in Beijing will be a landmark event for the Ministry of Tourism in its initiatives to promote travel from China to India.

Tourist Arrivals from China for the last four years are as follows:

2003 2004 2005 2006*

21152 34100 44897 62330

(* Provisional)

Indian tourist traveling to China in the last 3 three years are as follows:-

2003 2004 2005 2006

219097 309411 356460 405091

As is evident from the figures shown above, in 2006, for the first time, China (Main) emerged as one of the top 15 tourist generating markets for India. It occupied the fourteenth position with 1.4% share in arrivals. The arrivals from China (Main) were merely 1371 in 1981 but have grown to 62330 in 2006 at a compound annual growth rate of 16.5%.

Air was the predominant mode of travel from China (Main) during 2006 (98.7%), followed by land routes (1%). Maximum tourists disembarked at Delhi airport (48.9%), followed by Mumbai (24.7%) and Bangalore (8.6%). The peak quarter of arrivals from China (Main) in 2006 was October-December (32.4%), followed by January-March (26.9%). Of the total arrivals from China (Main) during 2006, 9% did not report their gender, while 64.9% were male land 26.1% were female. The dominant age group in 2006 was 25-34 year (34.4%), followed by the age-group 35-44 year (33.3%). The purpose of visit for nationals from China (Main) was “tourism & others” (99.5%) and “education & employment”(0.4% during 2006.

The Ministry of Tourism had initiated several programmes for promotion of tourism between China and India. The highlights of the programmes have been, printing of Tourism Brochures in Chinese language, setting up of the website in Chinese language, India’s participation in the China International Travel Market held in Kunming in November 2007 and also India’s participation in the closing ceremony of the India China Friendship Year in January 2008.

The Ministry of Tourism as part of further strengthening the bilateral relations between the two countries also took a delegation of Tour Operators and Travel Agents on familiarisation tour to China. Similarly, there was a familiarisation tour of Chinese Tour Operators in India.

To mark the opening of the office, the Ministry of Tourism has planned an Incredible India Evening wherein the best of Indian Culture and Cuisine will be showcased. This event will be held on 7th April 2008 in Beijing where the Chairman, China National Tourism Authority will be the Chief Guest. Minister Tourism & Culture,Smt. Ambika Soni will participate in the event on 7th April 2008 and would then return to India. Thereafter , Secretary ( Tourism), Shri S.Banerjee will travel to Shanghai to participate in the functions to be held there on 9th April,2008. In Shanghai too there will be cultural evening and Dinner.

The Ministry of Culture in association with Sangeet Natak Academy is putting up a special classical dance performance choreographed by Mrs. Leela Samson in Beijing and Shanghai . A group of 71 Artists will be traveling to Beijing and Shanghai to participate in the said event. A team of 5 Chefs each from ITDC will be traveling to Beijing and Shanghai to organize a India Food Festival in the respective cities. The Food Festival will be held at Beijing Hotel in Beijing from 7th -14 April 2008 and in Shanghai from 8th to 15th April.