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Korean tensions hit mainland tourism industry

[ 2010-12-02 14:41]     字号 [] [] []  
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Outbound tourism from China to the Korean Peninsula dropped dramatically after the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) exchanged artillery fire with the Republic of Korea (ROK) on Nov 23.

Many Chinese travelers' fear of a war breaking out drove them to cancel their plans to visit the two Koreas, along with Northeast China's Heilongjiang, Liaoning and Jilin provinces, which are close to the peninsula.

Shanghai resident Dong Shuangyan, 26, had planned a trip to Heilongjiang's ski resort Xuexiang with a group of friends six months before the first shot was fired, but has since decided to postpone the trip a few days before they were due to depart.

"The flight I'd booked was on Dec 1, when the ROK and the United States conducted military exercises, which really put me off," Dong said.

Travel agencies in Shanghai worried whether the exchange of fire between the two rivals in waters near a disputed maritime border would hit business during what was already a slow season.

The impact of the skirmish has now become apparent. The travel agency SAL Tour said the number of tourists heading to the ROK has halved and that tour groups to the DPRK were canceled until March.

"We used to send more than 200 people a week to the ROK, but now there are not quite 100 who are going," said Ding Zhenyi, a member of the agency.

"As for the DPRK, we've decided to stop sending tourists between December and March," said Sun Biao, one of Ding's colleagues who is in charge of the agency's DPRK business.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Korean tensions hit mainland tourism industry

About the broadcaster:

Korean tensions hit mainland tourism industry

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.