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World Tourism Alliance Visits its Members in the Yangtze River Delta Region


In order to understand the development status of World Tourism Alliance (WTA) members in the new era, marketplayers’ opinions on current situations, and expectations for WTA’s work, Liu Shijun, WTA Secretary-General, recently visited some members and non-members in Nanjing, Suzhou and Shanghai. This is the second time that the WTA Secretariat has carried out systematic member visits and exchange activities since it visited members and held a symposium in the Pearl River Delta region in March 2021.

From May 16 to 17, the Secretariat communicated with the Nanjing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism, Tuniu.com, Nanjing Tourism Group, etc. in Nanjing. Jin Weidong, Secretary of the Party Leadership Group and Director of the Nanjing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism, believed that the establishment of the WTAwas of great significance to the integrated development of tourism and culture, and said that member cities should make good use of the non-governmental platform of the WTA to have more effective communication and practical cooperation on the international stage. Yu Dunde, CEO of Tuniu.com, said that the WTA has built a bridge for overseas companies to actively enter into the Chinese market, and expecteda greater role of the WTA in facilitating the recovery of the tourism industry under the new normal and the improvement of quality. The Secretariat specially visited the Nanjing Tourism Group, the largest state-owned tourism enterprise in Jiangsu Province with the most complete industrial chain; and visited the Xinanli neighborhood together with the head of the Nanjing Tourism Group to learn about practices in renovation and upgrading, cultural consumption innovation, intangible heritage protection and IP brand building. Xie Guoqing, Chairman of Nanjing Tourism Group, gave a detailed introduction to the Secretariat on the group’s operating system, asset structure, main businesses, and innovative development.

On May 18, the Secretariat called on the Suzhou Municipal Bureau of Culture, Radio, Television and Tourism, and met with heads of the Suzhou Tourism Hotel Association and other organizations. Secretary-General Liu Shijun briefed the WTA’s development and recent work plans, and highlighted the five brand reports to be launched in the second half of the year. Han Weibing, Director of the Suzhou Municipal Bureau of Culture, Radio, Television and Tourism, said that Suzhou will position itself as a world-class tourist destination city, and create an inbound tourism brand of “Suzhou, a Must-See Place in China” and a service brand of “Most Pleasant Experience in Suzhou” through close cooperation with the WTA, and by taking advantage of the post-pandemic recovery of the cultural and tourism market and the development of international and domestic dual cycles. All relevant units expressed their desire to actively engage in the industry research work carried out by the WTA.

From May 19 to 21, the Secretariat went to Shanghai and visited the Shanghai Spring International Travel Service (Group) Co., Ltd., the Jin Jiang International (Holdings) Co., Ltd., the Ctrip Group, the China UnionPay Co., Ltd., and the Shanghai International Theme Park Co., Ltd. (Shanghai Disney Resort), the InterContinental Hotels Group, the French Club Med, the China Eastern Airlines Co., Ltd. and other member units. During the investigation, Liu Shijun shared WTA’s branding services and some achievements in poverty alleviation through tourism. He also introduced in detail the WTA’s activities scheduled in 2021 on the three priorities of “Fourth Xianghu Dialogue”, “General Election of the Board of Directors” and “Inauguration of the WTA Headquarters”.He called on members to donate collections to the World Tourism Museum which will soon open to the public. The member units introduced their corporate development and response to the epidemic, analyzed the trends of the domestic and international markets in the next stage, and expressed their intention to actively respond to WTA’s initiatives by donatingitems and materials of historical significance torelate the history of tourism industry to people around the world. Zhou Weihong, Director of Spring Group and Deputy General Manager of SpringTour, introduced the group history, and highlighted the group’s endeavor in social undertakings, such as poverty alleviation in Honghe Prefecture, Yunnan Province through education and employment. Guo Lijuan, Deputy Secretary of the Party Committee and President of Jin Jiang International (Holdings) Co., Ltd., received the Secretariat at the Shanghai TowerJ-Hotel of the Group. According to her introduction, the Shanghai Tower J-Hotelis a new landmark in Shanghai, an iconic project of Shanghai’s “Four Major Brands”, a new window into Shanghai’s reform and opening up, and a new platform for demonstrating Shanghai’s unique charmas a world-famous tourist city.

The Secretariat observed the process of real-time order and operation data generation at the Ctrip Group headquarters. Group CEO Sun Jie introduced the outstanding value of developing inbound tourism in realizing “people-to-people links” and promoting peaceful development, and expected the WTAto call for the implementation of relevant policies and more support to enterprises in the development of inbound tourism.

Li Xiaofeng, CEO of UnionPay International, introduced China UnionPay’s internationalization and overseas card issuance, analyzed the impact of the epidemic on cross-border payment business, and expressed intention to actively engage inand contribute to the WTA’s cross-border consumption topic.

Murray King, Vice President of Public Affairs and Communication Department of Shanghai Disney Resort, focused on the effective combination of corporate social responsibility and business interests, and expressed willingness to cooperate with the WTA to organize special events to raise people’s awareness of aging issues and barrier-free travel. Daniel Aylmer, Chief Operating Officer of InterContinental Hotels Group Greater China, believed that the epidemic has accelerated the transformation of the hotel industry in terms of both supply and demand sides. He said that the group has increased its investment in China, and put more efforts intonew products, operation optimization, channel supply, and talent training to meet the needs of consumers and owners in the new era.

Jean-Charles Fortoul, President of Club Med Asia Pacific, introduced the group’s global business operations,and expected the rapid development of its business and more investment in China in the next stage. On the one hand, it will accelerate its deployment in the central and western markets. On the other hand, it will upgrade existing facilities to better serve the post-pandemic market. Shen Jinsong, Deputy General Manager of China Eastern Airlines Sales Committee, recalled the exciting WTA inaugural meeting in 2017, and expressed intention to deepen the connotation and fields of cooperation with the WTA to better achieve mutual benefit and win-win results between the aviation sector and all links of the tourism industry chain.

Zhao Ke, Director of Division of Service and Management of the WTA Secretariat, and Fan Ruiqing, Project Officer of Division of Service and Management, engaged in this member visit and investigation.