Beijing to name Mozambique as an approved tourist destination

6 November 2006

Beijing, China, 06 Nov – China is set to grant Mozambique the status of approved tourist destination, which will encourage Chinese tourists to visit the East African country, the Chinese president said Saturday in Beijing.

China’s promise was made by Hu Jintao during a meeting he had in Beijing with the president of Mozambique, Armando Guebuza, on the sidelines of the head of state and government summit of the Forum for China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), held this weekend in Beijing.

The status of approved tourist destination is a bilateral agreement via which the Chinese state allows its citizens to make group visits to other countries with the need for an exit visa, but always through government approved travel agencies.

The Chinese president said that the measure was an effort to boost cooperation with Mozambique in the tourism sector and intensify mutual development.

The importance of Mozambique becoming one of the more than 100 countries to which China has already granted approved destination status will increase as China moves towards becoming the greatest source of tourists by 2020, with more than 115 million Chinese travelling outside the country, according to CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets.

“The Chinese government will also continue to provide assistance to Mozambique and encourage Chinese companies to invest in the country,” Hu said, noting that agriculture and infrastructure construction were the priorities for bilateral cooperation.

Trade between China and Mozambique in the first eight months of the year totaled some US$127 million, with China exporting around US$80 million, and importing some US$20 million from its African partner.

Overall trade last year between China and Mozambique totaled some US$165 million, a year on year rise of 38.1 percent. (macauhub)

MACAUHUB FRENCH