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China, Russia hold forum to boost tourism

2012-03-25 14:21 Xinhuanet     Web Editor: Su Jie comment

A China-Russia tourism forum kicked off in Beijing on Saturday as part of efforts to foster exchanges and friendship between both countries.

Vice Premier Wang Qishan and his Russian counterpart Vladislav Surkov attended the forum's opening ceremony.

Wang said cooperation between China and Russia has been successful in a wide range of fields in recent years. China has become Russia's second biggest source of tourists, while Russia has become China's third-largest source, Wang said.

Wang said he hopes the total number of mutual tourists will exceed five million by 2015.

"We will encourage qualified companies to invest in both countries and promote tourism exchanges among young people," he said.

Wang also urged the two countries, both rich in tourism resources, to expand cooperation and make this year's "Year of Russian Tourism" a success.

Surkov said Russia attaches great importance to developing relations with China and is willing to further promote bilateral cooperation in all fields.

He said Russia also welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest in its tourism.

Nearly 1,000 people from both countries attended Saturday's forum.

As agreed upon by both countries, China and Russia will hold the "Year of Russian Tourism" in China in 2012 and the "Year of Chinese Tourism" in Russia in 2013.

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