Shanghai targets 70% jump in tourism revenue
Authorities in Shanghai have set an ambitious growth target for the city’s tourism industry. The Shanghai Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China said yesterday that it is aiming for a huge 70% increase in tourism revenues by 2015. The China Daily reported the committee’s head, Yu Zhengsheng, as saying that Shanghai is planning to generate CNY520 billion (US$78.9 billion) in tourism revenues by 2015. This is in stark contrast to the CNY305 billion the city achieved in 2010 - the year that saw it host more than 70 million visitors fore the World Expo.
To achieve the target Shanghai would have to attract 240 million domestic tourists – an annual increase of 2.3% between now and 2015. The city is also looking to attract 10 million overseas tourists, which would mark a 4.6% annual rise. Last year, Shanghai received 215 million domestic tourists and 7.3 million overseas visitors.
The target is in line with the goal of becoming China’s financial and business centre, as well as transforming itself into major tourist destination. Tourism is expected to create 300,000 jobs and contribute 8.5% of the city’s gross development product by 2015, Yu said.
The city is already undertaking several major development projects in an effort to boost its appeal to visitors. The Hongqiao Transport Hub has been completed, offering a single connection point for international flights and the rapidly expanding high-speed rail network. Under the new plan, Shanghai’s downtown districts aim to lure retail, MICE and sightseeing sectors, while the Huangpu River and Suzhou Creek will also be developed for water-based tourism. Outside the city centre, the city’s suburbs will concentrate on ecotourism, industrial tours and theme parks, including Shanghai Disneyland which is expected to open in the city’s Pudong district in 2015, and plans to attract up to 10 million tourists per year.