MAINLAND China will get much of PATA’s attention in its tourism development plans, which include making the country a top focus of discussion in the association’s new PATA World City Forums and the launch of a PATA China Chapter.
In an email interview with the Daily, PATA’s new CEO, Martin Craigs, said: “PATA is making a new commitment to help our members engage emerging markets and mainland China has been recognised as the most dynamic emerging market, both as a destination and as a source of travellers.”
Craigs explained that the mission of the PATA China Chapter was to “educate the industry on changing trends, assist in business growth for international and domestic organisations doing business and focusing on the mainland as a market, network with industry peers to further collaboration between Chinese and expat members of the Chinese travel and tourism industry, and build a community of tourism professionals in mainland China”.
He said: “PATA is keen to support the mainland at the national, municipality and provincial levels in terms of tourism development and the exchange of best practice information.”
Since the establishment of the PATA China Office in 2007, mainland China membership has grown, along with PATA’s scope of cooperation with its members. Several signature events have been held, including the UNWTO/PATA Forum on Tourism Trends and Outlook (now a permanent event in Guilin), PATA Travel Mart 2009 and 2010 in Hangzhou and Macau respectively, and the PATA 60th Anniversary and Conference in Beijing in April.
He added: “PATA China Office has been providing assistance and support to member organisations, with numerous tourism development projects covering planning, marketing, branding, product development and crisis management, with a particular focus on destinations such as Shanghai, Dalian, Hangzhou and Chengdu.”
It also endorsed events such as Wenzhou Online Network Tourism Festival, Tourism Industry Festivals in Guangdong, Hunan and Guizhou and Beijing’s World Tourism City Federation.