On Monday, when the sun is hot,
I wonder to myself a lot:
“Now is it true or is it not,
That what is which in which is what?”
This is the beginning of a poem by Winnie-The-Pooh, as recorded in the book of the same name by A.A. Milne, published 95 years ago. As you may know, any mentioning of the “Bear of very little brain” (as Winnie modestly describes himself) in China is strictly censored, since some years ago netizens started to mock the fact that President Xi resembles the famous bear in appearance and body language. Watching the speech given by the president on July 1st in front of 70,000 participants in a strikingly old-fashioned looking birthday party for the party on Tiananmen Square, it was hard not to be reminded of Winnie, even if the words spoken did not resemble at all the Daoist insights of the Bear into the relativity of truth and perception.
With the 100th anniversary celebrations gone without a glitch and still not a single CoViD-19 casualty in the country since January 2021, rumours started again about an imminent start of travel bubbles not only between Hong Kong and Macau, but also between Hong Kong and selected cities in Mainland China. It may well be that not the land border to Shenzhen will open first, but only arrivals by air from Chinese airports will be permitted, keeping the number of visitors low and the effective control and testing of arrivals easy to organize.
Macau SAR, until now the only destination in 2021 open to Chinese travellers without the need for quarantine on return, restricted in early June arrivals from a couple of Southern Chinese cities after a limited outbreak of CoViD-19 in Guangdong, but opened up again to most of them after a few weeks. In the first half of 2021, altogether almost four million Mainland Chinese visited Macau, with for the first time overnight visitors not only staying longer on average, but also outnumbering same-day visitors, who in previous years were responsible for more than half of all arrivals from Mainland China.
Therefore, with so much to say about the restart of China’s outbound tourism, COTRI has decided to add a weekly podcast to its range of free information offers (including obviously also the COTRI Weekly you are just reading), starting at the end of this week. In the podcast COTRI Talks! your humble editor will speak about one current topic each Friday and will also regularly conduct interviews with major experts and thought leaders from a wide range of industries. The focus will be – no surprise here! – China’s outbound tourism, but COTRI Talks! will also analyse and discuss it as a part of global tourism and the necessary changes needed for the international tourism development towards a Meaningful Tourism.
Watch out for details on how to listen to COTRI Talks! on our website www.china-outbound.com and our posts on LinkedIn and Instagram. Happy listening!
As always, best wishes from Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Georg Arlt and the complete COTRI Weekly team!