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China and Seychelles developing tourism in earnest

China and Seychelles developing tourism in earnest

Mr. Zhang Shigang, President of the China Travel Service (CTS), and Mr. Wayne Xu, his Assistant President, received Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister for Tourism and Culture, and Elsia Grandcourt, the CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board, at their Head Office in Beijing in China to discuss the continued push of Seychelles holidays by CTS right across China.

Minister St.Ange and Madame Grandcourt, accompanied by Glynn Burridge, the Board Copy Writer and Consultant, and by Jean Luc Lai Lam and Lee Huanhuan, the Seychelles Tourism Board Managers based in Beijing, were briefed by the CTS President on forward bookings for Seychelles and their commitment to continue to develop packages to Seychelles for Chinese holidaymakers.

After touring the Head Office of CTS in Beijing, Minister St.Ange said that Seychelles valued the support of CTS and remained committed to working with them. The Seychelles Minister took the opportunity of their presence at the CTS Head Office to invite Mr. Zhang Shigang, President of CTS, to visit Seychelles in July during the Routes Africa 2012 Forum. “This will be an excellent opportunity for you to meet all airlines connecting Seychelles from China through these airlines’ respective hubs. We are happy to hear that your first big group of 152 holidaymakers earlier this year on board Ethiopian Airlines was deemed successful and that subsequent smaller groups have all given Seychelles their thumbs up as a great holiday destination. We now need you, as President of CTS, to see and experience Seychelles as we move forward to the consolidation of our relationship,” Minister Alain St.Ange said to Mr. Zhang Shigang.

Seychelles has been working hard to diversify their tourism markets, and China was identified as a target market at the Board’s 2011 Marketing Meeting, which sees all the Tourism Board’s Overseas Managers rally for their annual strategizing meeting. “The Overseas Tourism Board Offices last year, as they have done for the last two years, spent quality time with the private sector trade during the annual marketing meeting, saying what they saw as trends in their respective markets, and they took on board the points of view of the local tourism entrepreneurs before meeting in the session to map out the Tourism Board’s strategy for the coming year. It was at that 2011 meeting, held alongside the La Reunion Marketing Team, that the Seychelles Tourism Board decided to focus on the policy of diversification of the tourism markets for Seychelles,” Minister Alain St.Ange said.

Today it is proven that this plan of action by the Seychelles Tourism Board Marketing Team was right and that it was bearing fruits for the islands’ tourism industry.