Taiwan tourism businesses ready for mainland tourists

A leading Taiwan tourism businessman said here Wednesday that Taiwan's tourism businesses have made thorough preparations for the visits of mainland tourists and hope mainland tourists could come to Taiwan soon.

"Opening Taiwan to mainland tourists is the last Spring of Taiwan's tourist industry," Tseng Sheng-hai, secretary-general of the Taiwan Strait Tourism Association, said in an interview with Xinhua.

Tseng said Taiwan's tourism businesses are eager for the visits of mainland tourists. "We are ready both in software and hardware."

Tseng said more than 3,000 tourists guides have been trained to receive mainland tourists and 41 new hotels have been built to ensure sufficient accommodation.

Taiwan's tourism association has also issued regulation to standardize the business practice in receiving mainland travelers.

The Chinese mainland removed the travel ban on mainland residents to Taiwan in May 2005, in order to expand people-to-people contacts and help boost Taiwan's tourism industry.

Since October 2006, non-governmental tourism organizations in the mainland and Taiwan have conducted five rounds of talks and reached consensus on major technical issues.

Tseng, also one of the negotiators in cross-strait tourism negotiations, said so far no technical problems remained to be solved. "The remaining work is to put the consensus into text and wait for approval of the authorities."

Experts have estimated that Taiwan would reap revenues of 26.5 billion New Taiwan Dollars (about 803 million U.S. dollars) annually if it hosted a 1,000 mainland tourists a day.

Source: Xinhua

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