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Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal City Tourism Promotion Alliance Established 2018-11-16

In June 22th, the 38th World Heritage Conference held in Doha, Qatar, the Grand Canal was inscribed on the UNESCO’s World Heritage List.

In June 24th, the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal City Tourism Promotion Alliance formed by 18 cities along the Grand Canal was established in Hangzhou. Representatives from China National Tourism Administration, Zhejiang Tourism Bureau and Hangzhou municipal government attended the inauguration.

The inauguration was organized by Hangzhou Tourism Commission & Hangzhou Grand Canal Protection Committee, hosted by Hangzhou municipal government, Zhejiang Tourism Bureau, and held under the guidance of National Tourism Administration.

These 18 cties that formed the alliance are: Beijing, Tianjin, Cangzhou (Hebei Province), Hengshui (Hebei Province), Dezhou(Shandong Province), Liaocheng (Shandong Province), Jining (Shandong Province), Tai'an (Shandong Province), Zaozhuang (Shandong Province), Suqian (Jiangsu Province), Huai'an (Jiangsu Province), Yangzhou (Jiangsu Province), Changzhou (Jiangsu Province), Wuxi (Jiangsu Province), Suzhou (Jiangsu Province), Huzhou, Jiaxing City (Zhejiang Province), Hangzhou (Zhejiang Province). Alliance’s Secretariat is located in Hangzhou Tourism Commission. Around 150 people attended the inauguration, among which are representatives from tourism bureaus (Commissions), travel agencies and key scenic areas of the above 18 cities along the canal side.

The Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, knowing as the longest canal or artificial river in the world; began its construction 2,400 years ago. Its distinctive, uniqueness and diversity of culture, environment, ecology, make it long-last of tourism value for the world. The alliance has provided great opportunity for connecting throughout the north and south, integrating natural, cultural and intangible heritages. These 6 provinces 18 cities along the canal side will become a brand new platform for the Chinese tourism external display, and mutual benefits of regional cooperation. They’ll make efforts to create a well-known and attractive international tourism route which will be more significant, to enhance the overall image of the Grand Canal and to promote the regional economic development.

In the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal City Tourism Promotion Alliance inauguration, these 18 cities debut for the first time as unified. Conference issued a " Hangzhou Consensus", pointing out that the alliance aims to integrate the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal side cities’ tourism resources, to accelerate cooperation of development for cities along the regional tourism, to promote the brand as a united alliance, to discuss the new possibility of tourism coordination methods, to promote tourism exchanges and cooperation between cities, to scheme new world-class tourist route for Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, to continuously improve the international reputation and competitiveness of Chinese tourism.

This alliance will carry out a regional market project in the next 3-5 years with ten emphases: an album, a tourist route, a group of canal cuisine, a film, a quantity of tourism festivals, a special website, a tourist strategy throughout the whole canal, a plenty of souvenirs, a spokesperson. We believe that in the near future, the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal tourism route will become an important Chinese or even world-class tourism product.

After the ceremony, expert gave an interpretation based on the Grand Canal world heritage genes, expert from CITS made a speech about market prospects of the Grand Canal tours and its route development keynote. Meanwhile, 18 cities held their first tourism resources promotion negotiation, in order to deepen market cooperation. After the inauguration, all the delegates investigated tourism resources around the Grand Canal (Hangzhou section).
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