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China travel law benefits New Zealand tourism industry

Xinhua | Updated: 2014-05-21 13:54

The number of visitors to New Zealand rose 6.1 percent in the year to the end of April, hitting 2.78 million, with a marked increase in the "quality" of tourists from China, a senior tourism official said Wednesday.

Visitor arrivals to New Zealand numbered 224,200 in April, up 12 percent from April 2013, largely due to the later timing of Easter and school holidays in some key source countries, said a statement from Statistics New Zealand.

Impressive growth from Western markets had pushed up international visitor arrivals for the year, with Germany, the United States and Britain being "stand-out performers" with growth rates of 16.3 percent, 11.3 percent and 2.8 percent, according to the government's Tourism New Zealand agency.

Visitor arrivals from China were down 1.4 percent for the month, but were up 10.4 percent for the year ended April, Tourism New Zealand chief executive Kevin Bowler said in a statement.

"While growth has slowed, we are seeing a significant increase in the quality of arrivals from China," said Bowler.

"Our analysis has shown that stay days were up 26.8 percent in the seven months since the implementation of the China Travel Law (in October 2013), generating an additional 199,072 stay days from Chinese holiday visitors."

The China Travel Law required travel sellers in China to offer better quality group tour packages.

The figures showed a positive trend that was also reflected in rising spending by overseas visitors, he said.


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