The Grand Canal. China's Grand Canal and the ancient Silk Road were both inscribed on the World Heritage list last year. So far, China has 47 items listed on the UNESCO's world heritage list, second only to Italy in the world. (Photo/Xinhua)
China has jumped to 17th position in the 2015 global travel and tourism competitiveness, according to the World Economic Forum's 2015 Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index, a biennial report published earlier this month.
The study measured 141 economies in terms of their potential to generate economic and societal benefits through a sustainable travel and tourism industry.
The 2015 assessment saw Spain lead the world ranking for the first time, with traditional tourist destinations France, Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Australia, Italy, Japan and Canada also figuring in the top 10 list. The report said the competitiveness gap between these advanced economies and emerging markets is closing.
When the index was first released in 2007, China was at the 71st place. The country's natural and cultural resources and the price competitiveness have helped it to gain 28 places in comparison with 2013 to the 17th position in the rankings this year.
China so far has 47 items listed on the UNESCO's world heritage list, second only to Italy in the world. The study also recognized China's achievements on the construction of infrastructure, the rise of the creative industry and the ability to host international events.
ADVERTISING3 3 However, factors such as China's particulate matter concentration, tourist service and the sustainable development of tourism undermined the country's competitiveness.
The other top performers in the Asia-Pacific are the region's more advanced economies, namely Australia (7th), Japan (9th), Singapore (11th), Hong Kong SAR (13th) and New Zealand (16th).
Japan's human resources were highly qualified and excel in terms of the hospitality, where Japan was ranked first globally. The country was ranked second in staff training. However, the country is not a price-competitive destination, with ticket taxes and airport charges ranking 82nd and, fuel price levels 126th. Due to the rising number of both international arrivals and middle-class tourists within the region, Eastern Asia is one of the world's most vibrant tourism hotspots, the report said.