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China starts cultural activities in 99 countries


09:06, February 01, 2013

BEIJING, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- China launched cultural activities to celebrate the upcoming Spring Festival in 251 cities of 99 countries, a Ministry of Culture official announced Thursday.

A total of 385 events will be held during the festival season, including temple fairs, parades, theater dramas, expositions, fashion shows and new media interactions, said ministry official Zhao Haisheng at a press conference.

Chinese pianist Lang Lang and popular TV hostesses Ni Ping and Yang Lan are the image ambassadors for the activities this year, Zhao added.

"In recent years, we have noticed that more countries celebrate the Spring Festival, and more foreigners are willing to learn Chinese culture via observing the festival," said Wei Xin, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs official.

China started overseas activities to celebrate the Spring Festival in 2010. They are jointly organized by ministries, local cultural organizations and Chinese institutions that have branches abroad.

Spring Festival marks the start of a new year according to the Chinese lunar calendar. This year's festival falls on Feb. 10.

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