Maria Miller, the current Culture Secretary in UK, has announced a new initiative to make the kingdom the most popular European destination for Chinese visitors. The VisitBritain’s China campaign which is launching in spring 2014 is expected to develop and promote how the United Kingdom travel industry attends to the needs of Chinese visitors.
While delivering a speech at an event held in China, Maria Miller said that Britain is open for business and that this is just the beginning to better things in future. She said that they also expect businesses from all parts of the country to participate by signing up and being part of this game changing initiative.
The “China Welcome” initiative shows how serious the travel and tourism authorities in Britain are in making sure the country is ahead of its competitors when it comes to attracting Chinese tourists and businesses entrepreneurs. The Culture Secretary said that they are determined to encourage more people from China to visit the country, enjoy its scenery, cuisine, shopping, sport and music.
The China program plans to secure more than 650,000 Chinese visits annually by the year 2020 which will be worth an approximated GBP 1.1 billion each year to the UK economy. Among the things which will be done as a part of the campaign is working with businesses to share customer insights, promote and advertise training of Mandarin-speaking guides and uplift cultural awareness to ensure that the visitors from China to Britain get as much as possible from their trips.
The announcement made by the Culture Secretary also serves as a call for interested and related businesses to sign up and be involved. Signatories can be assured that they will benefit in that they will have a competitive advantage, recognition from Chinese visitors and consequently, a better portion of the Chinese businesses.
Sandie Dawe who is the current CEO of VisitBritain said that of late, China has become the world’s largest tourist source market and is currently worth USD 102 billion. He added that the initiative is designed to ensure that Britain competes effectively for this market by encouraging businesses to develop products which will be appealing to Chinese visitors and that the welcome message is passed out widely.
For instance, the Birmingham Airport and Chinese operator Caissa who are both supporters of the China Welcome program are working together to increase the number of Chinese visitors who get into the country by Caissa via Birmingham.
The amount of money Chinese visitors spend while they are in Britain is reported to have increased considerably in the first half of 2013 and is expected to continue surging after the initiative is launched. According to the official British Statistics, Chinese tourists spent GBP 181 million in the first half of 2013 which adds up to 132% year on year.