Tibet hosts 2.25 mln tourists in first half of 2011

10:14, July 29, 2011      

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Visitors stroll at the Potala Palace Square in Lhasa, capital of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, July 27, 2011. (Xinhua/Wang Wen)
Tibet recorded 2.25 million tourist arrivals in the first half of this year, up 24.8 percent year-on-year, according to figures released by the region's tourism bureau on Thursday.

The region's total tourism revenues went up by 39.65 percent to reach 7.14 billion yuan (1.11 billion U.S. dollars) during the period, according to the figures.

The bureau estimates that the number of tourist arrivals will hit a new high of 7.5 million in 2011. Tourism has become a pillar industry in Tibet, as its infrastructure and transportation have been significantly improved in recent years. The region receives over 10,000 tourists daily.

The Lhasa Gonggar Airport sees nearly 60 arrival and departure flights each day, while the three civil airports in Nyingchi, Qamdo and Xigaze handles 62 flights each week for tourists.

The Qinghai-Tibet Railway has transported over 10 million tourists since its opening on July 1, 2006, helping to drive up Tibet's tourist numbers, according to Padma Choling, chairman of the Tibet Autonomous Region.

By the end of 2015, Tibet expects to host 15 million tourists annually and post annual tourism revenues of 18 billion yuan, Padma said.

Source: Xinhua

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