Xiamen to boost tourism from Europe

Updated: 2014-04-23 10:19

By Tuo Yannan (China Daily Europe)

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In order to propel tourist industry, China's Fujian Provincial Tourism Bureau and Xiamen Tourism Bureau have launched a campaign "Go to Amoy" with the Netherland airline company KLM on April 22.

In 13th century, Xiamen was called "Amoy" by Portuguese. The international harbour coastal city is located on the southeast coast of China and the western bank of Taiwan Strait.

Chen Guilin, Xiamen Tourism Bureau deputy director general, told China Daily that since 2011, KLM opened the direct flight from Amsterdam to Xiamen, which takes 12 hours, boosting the tourist industry between the two countries.

"Started from 2011, tourists from Europe to Xiamen kept 10 percent annual growth rate, and reached 148,800 last year with a 16 percent growth," Chen said.

In the first three months of this year, the growth rate increased 42 percent year-on-year, he added.

Xiamen is very famous domestically, but not that well-known in Europe, therefore, the local government decided to launch this promoting campaign from April 22 to 30 in the Netherlands, Germany, France, Switzerland and Italy to promote the city, Chen explained.

"Last month President Xi Jinping visited the Netherlands and received very warm welcome, we followed president's footprint and chose the country as our portal to Europe," he said.

KLM's Europe-China flights have increased 5 folds in the last decade, according to Carl Schelleman, vice-president sales and service of KLM Netherland.

He said with 7 destinations in China, Amsterdam has become an important portal for European people to visit China. Every week, three flights are provided by the company from Amsterdam to Xiamen.