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Nepal seeks way to promote tourism between Nepal and China

Feb 12, 2009

KATHMANDU - At the time when Himalayan nation Nepal is facing crucial financial turn, it has emphasized the bilateral cooperation between Nepal and China in the tourism sector, said Rajesh kazi Shrestha, President of Nepal-China Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI).

Since tourism plays a vital role in Nepal's economy after the foreign remittance from foreign employment, Nepal is focusing on the possibilities for tourism promotion between Nepal and China, Shrestha said in an interview with Xinhua on Thursday.

"Nepal's tourism potentials are well known and Chinese tourists could play a pivotal role in realizing our potential," said Shrestha, locating at possibilities for tourism promotion between the two countries.

"The tourism sector between Nepal and China rests on a long history. As per the past records of the Chinese travelers to SouthAsia many centuries ago, it is witnessed that the Chinese were the first to explore Nepal as outside tourists," Shrestha said.

According to Shrestha, there is an urgent need to seek cooperation with neighbors. At the very bad times for the world economy, the Asian economies, especially China, is showing the flexibility.

"China would tide over this phase of financial turmoil and come up as a much bigger player in the world economy, we, very close neighbor of China, hope that Nepal will also benefit from the strength of the Chinese economy," Shrestha said.

Meanwhile, he said that cooperation between the two countries has acquired added significance in the present context.

"The number of Chinese visitors going abroad is more than 40 million and has been continuously growing at double digit figures. The largest market in Asia is indeed mouth watering for any country or operator," said Shrestha.

According to him, during the last few years, the number of Chinese visitors to Nepal has been increasing but is very less compared to the number of Chinese going abroad.

"We are told that there will be 3 million tourists in Tibet this year. The entire face of Nepal's tourism will take big leap in the positive direction, if a small fraction of Chinese tourists could be made to Nepal," Shrestha said intending to attract Chinese tourist through the way of Tibet.

"For this, we need a good link through land and air transportations. We see the land link between Nepal and Lhasa bus service must be re-operated to benefit immediately," Shrestha noted.

According to Shrestha, Nepal has all attributes to attract tourists from China. All it needs is a proper product development and marketing strategy.

Shrestha said that it is not adequate to have an effort of one company or institution. There needs to have collaborate and bringsforward products and services as per the expectations of Chinese visitors. "Besides this, we have to market our products in China,"he said. "Here I think, the role of air link is crucial," Shrestha added.

Pointing out these upheavals, Shrestha said, "We all feel sad that our national carrier could not continue its flight to a Chinese city. What we need is direct connection with not one or two but with major cities in China."

According to him, there is also the need to involve the Chinese investors in Nepal's tourism infrastructure.

Recently, Nepal celebrated 2011 as Nepal Tourism Year (NTY-2011). As a part of this, Nepal is seeking possibilities to attract more international tourists to visit Nepal.

"We definitely need the government's strong involvement to create a comprehensive economic package to make the Chinese tourists visit frequently and also to make them hold longer stay to meet the target," said Shrestha.

Nepal seeks way to promote tourism between Nepal and China
Kathmandu, Nepal / Image via

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