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Forum promotes cross-Strait tours

THE Chinese mainland will try to increase the number of mainland tourists to Taiwan, a mainland official said yesterday.

Shao Qiwei, director of the mainland-based Cross-Strait Tourism Communication Association, said travel agencies newly accredited to sell Taiwan tours on the mainland will start running trips next month.

A total of 113 agencies have been approved by the tourism association in mid February. Another 33 had prior accreditation.

Addressing the opening of a two-day cross-Strait tourism symposium in Taipei, Shao said the mainland also welcomed Taiwan tourists.

He urged the tourist industry on both sides to fight the economic downturn by increasing advertising, promoting cruises and including Hong Kong and Macau in itineraries.

Since 1987 more than 51 million Taiwanese have visited the mainland and about 2 million Chinese mainlanders have visited Taiwan.


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