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ixasiangamesdelhi1982|Interview: Travel, tourism to contribute 10 pct to Chinese economy in 2024, says WTTC CEO

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by Martina Fuchs

LONDON, June 20 (Xinhua) -- China's travel and tourism sector is set to inject a record-breaking 12ixasiangamesdelhi1982.62 trillion yuan (1ixasiangamesdelhi1982.7 trillion U.S. dollars) into its economy by the end of this year, the chief executive of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has said.

"Travel and tourism are contributing massively to the Chinese economy," Julia Simpson, the council's president and CEO, told Xinhua via a recent video interview. "It is going to represent almost 10 percent of the Chinese economy this year."

In partnership with Oxford Economics, a world leader in global economic forecasting, the WTTC's latest research shows that domestic travel spending is also set to reach new highs this year, expected to contribute 6.79 trillion yuan (954.88 billion dollars) to China's economy in 2024.

"In the next 10 years, the sector is going to represent almost 14 percent of the Chinese economy. It's going to be employing more than 107 million people in China and will be worth about 3.6 trillion U.S. dollars. This is enormous," said Simpson.

Simpson stressed the need for reciprocal treatment for simplified visa application processes for Chinese travelers. "We need to ensure that Chinese travelers can get visas so that they can travel around the world."

ixasiangamesdelhi1982|Interview: Travel, tourism to contribute 10 pct to Chinese economy in 2024, says WTTC CEO

Simpson also highlighted the importance of Chinese aircraft manufacturers to produce at a larger, international scale.

The Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China presented its C919 passenger aircraft at the Singapore Airshow in February and announced in March its plan to invest tens of billions of yuan over the next three to five years to expand C919 production capacity.

"In aviation, there's currently a shortage of aircraft after the pandemic. We want to be able to lend our support and voice for the Chinese airlines to ensure that they can really expand," said Simpson.

Founded in 1990, the WTTC is a global authority on the economic and social contribution of travel and tourism. As a non-profit organization based in London, its members include over 200 CEOs, chairpersons, and presidents of the world's leading private-sector travel and tourism businesses.