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China mulls draft law to check tourism price hikes


14:05, April 23, 2013

BEIJING, April 23 (Xinhua) -- Chinese lawmakers mulled a draft tourism law on Tuesday that outlines measures to curb rocketing ticket prices amid the country's tourism boom.

The draft law on tourism was tabled for its third reading on Tuesday at the bimonthly session of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), the country's top legislature.

After previous readings in August and December, the current version of the draft also includes procedures and rules to curb price hikes on tickets for scenic spots.

Some lawmakers said that wanton price increases in some scenic sites is becoming "a prominent problem," calling for measures to restrain such practices, the report from the NPC's Law Committee said.

According to the draft, tourism sites developed using public resources should strictly control rises in entrance fees or other additional charges. They will also have to hold public hearings if they plan to raise prices.

The bill also bans "hidden price increases" through increasing programs for extra charges. Such programs should reduce or even abolish charges once the investment has been recouped, the draft stipulates.

To keep tourists better informed and ensure their safety amid the backdrop of the country's tourism craze, which is especially apparent during public holidays, the draft law stipulates that tourism sites should issue early warnings to the public if the number of tourists at a site is expected to reach maximum capacity.

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