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UNWTO Silk Road Program joins China Xi’an Silk Road International Tourism Expo to propel Silk Road tourism development

July 28, 2014 Conferences No Comments Email Email

Held at the Quijang International Conference&Exhibition Centre from September 19-21, 2014, China Xi’an Silk Road International Tourism Expo is attracting a lot of buzz for its first of its kind showcase of the ancient Silk Road.

With a gross exhibiting area of over 20,000 square meters, CXSRITE is expecting to welcome some 500 international and Chinese exhibitors from 30 countries. On top of the encouraging support received for Silk Road’s recent revival efforts, UN World Tourism Organization’s (UNWTO’s) Silk Road Program Manager, Ms. Alla Peressolova, will be attending the event to offer more insights into developing Silk Road Tourism.

A leading international organization in the field of tourism, UNWTO launched the Silk Road Program in 1993 as a collaborative initiative specially crafted to promote sustainable tourism development along the Silk Road route. This initiative seeks to ensure that maximum benefits for its local communities are reaped by encouraging the conservation of the route’s cultural and natural heritage, stimulating economic activity as well as fostering greater cooperation between Silk Road member states.

Apart from Chinese President Xi Jin Ping’s proposal of the establishment of the “Silk Road Economic Belt,” recent developments saw the first Silk Road Heritage Corridor inscribed onto UNESCO’s World Heritage List on 22 June 2014. A multinational application by China, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, the inscription of the Chang’an-Tianshan Corridor will create significant opportunities for tourism development.

In fact, as the ancient central capital Chang’an in the Han and Tang Dynasties and regarded as the origin of the Silk Road, the Xi’an city in Shaanxi Province will be hosting the first large-scale international tourism event – China Xi’an Silk Road International Tourism Expo (CXSRITE), bringing together international, regional and local tourism stakeholders to explore Silk Road Tourism and beyond.

The Shaanxi Province is also the treasure house of cultural relics such as the Terracotta Army which was buried under the city by great emperor Qin Shi Huang. Other famous local heritage sites include the extraordinary Buddhist landmark, Dayan Pagoda, the Drum&Bell Towers as well as nature trails and peaks such as Cuihua and Huashan.

An initiative by the Shaanxi Provincial Tourism Administration, CXSRITE 2014 will serve as a one-stop tourism hub, divided into four sections to meet the needs of local and international tourism stakeholders. These sections include: 1) Shaanxi Provincial Tourism Attractions and Organizations; 2) Other Chinese Provincial Tourism Attractions and Organizations; 3) Shaanxi travel agencies, airlines and hotels; and lastly, 4) International Pavilions formed by Ancient Silk Road partner countries and new tourism partners, all of which will house 2,000 square meters of exhibits each. The expo currently is 75% full, with participation from more than 21 countries, 29 local provinces and more than 20 major travel agencies and corporations, who will be showcasing their destinations and conducting on-site business meetings, as well as on-site sales of travel packages and products.

Other interesting highlights to look out for include destinations’ presentation sessions by participating exhibitors, cultural activities, performances and daily lucky draw sessions.

Especially in its effort to developing Silk Road Tourism, the first CXSRITE 2014 will host a high-level meeting with representatives from the various tourism sectors to discuss the various issues in developing Silk Road Tourism. UNWTO Silk Road Program Manager Ms. Alla Peressolova will also be present to partake in the various discussions. With the theme of Silk Road Tourism and urban development, the high-level meeting will be the ideal platform for leaders to begin talks to facilitate international co-operation among the various tourism sectors to accelerate economic developments for countries along the Silk Route.

Apart from the above highlight, participants will also be treated to a unique showcase of cultural performances at a welcoming ceremony at the city’s gates, which is akin to the Royal Welcoming Ceremony in the ancient Chinese dynasties.

With only less than two months to its launch, CXSRITE 2014 enters into its final phases of preparation. With the strong support from local tourism authorities and international tourism stakeholders, CXSRITE 2014 will be the ideal starting point for travel and tourism industry players to explore new business partnerships and exciting opportunities in the Silk Road region.

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