Tourism improves Cambodia relations

Updated: Jun 11, 2024 By CHENG SI and LI YINGQING CHINA DAILY Print
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Chinese artists perform during the launching ceremony of the 2024 Cambodia-China People-to-People Exchange Year in Siem Reap province, Cambodia, Jan 13, 2024. [Photo/Xinhua]

China and Cambodia are poised to strengthen tourism cooperation, aiming to leverage their rich cultural and natural resources for mutual economic and social benefits.

This deepened partnership coincides with the 2024 China-Cambodia People-to-People Exchange Year, which will see a series of cultural, sporting and tourism events held in both nations.

The yearlong focus on cultural exchanges provides a fitting backdrop for a tourism promotion event co-hosted by China and Cambodia in Kunming, Yunnan province, on Friday.

Yunnan, which borders Myanmar and Laos, is the Chinese province closest to Cambodia.

Zeng Yan, head of the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China Yunnan Provincial Committee, emphasized the long-standing friendship between China and Cambodia. Recognizing their shared wealth of tourism assets and cultural heritage, Zeng expressed hope for further collaboration in responsibly developing these resources to benefit both countries' citizens.

Tourism plays a pivotal role in Cambodia's economic development strategy, and the nation has actively sought to attract Chinese travelers in recent years.

Prak Phannara, secretary of state of the Ministry of Tourism of the Kingdom of Cambodia, highlighted this success, noting that the number of tourist visits from China reached more than 550,000 in 2023, accounting for roughly 10 percent of the country's international tourist arrivals.

Phannara emphasized Yunnan's significance as a key partner in Cambodia's tourism development, expressing optimism for future achievements in China-Cambodia tourism cooperation.

Data from Chinese travel agencies confirms Cambodia's growing popularity among Chinese tourists.

Travel portal Tuniu reported that Beijing and Shanghai residents have booked the most Cambodia tours thus far, with peak travel seasons typically occurring between December and February.

Similarly, online travel agency Qunar noted a surge in sales for Cambodia tour packages, with summer holiday flight bookings to the country having already increased by more than 120 percent.

This deepened focus on tourism collaboration between China and Cambodia signifies a promising avenue for promoting cultural exchanges and mutual economic growth during the 2024 China-Cambodia People-to-People Exchange Year.

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