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Monday, January 24, 2022

Covid Live Updates: Restrictions Keeping Chinese Tourists At Home, Damaging Industry

Credit …Kasia Streck for The New York Times

This was to be the year of the return trip. In Europe and Asia, many countries have reopened their airports and welcomed tourists. But they are facing a new reality: Options like Omicron are causing global panic, forcing governments to close borders again and their biggest sponsors, Chinese tourists, will not be returning anytime soon.

As part of its efforts to maintain a zero Covid approach, China announced that international flights will be kept at 2.2 percent from pre-Covid levels over the winter. Since August, he has almost completely stopped issuing new passports and introduced a 14-day quarantine for all arrivals. Returning to China also requires a bunch of paperwork and several tests for Covid-19.

Many there decided to stay put. The result: shopping malls empty, restaurants closed, and hotels empty. This is another blow to an industry that has just begun to recover. The recession has particularly affected North and Southeast Asia.

Over the past decade, no country has played a more important role in global travel than China. Chinese tourists spent about $ 260 billion in 2019, which exceeds the number of citizens of other nationalities. Their prolonged absence would mean that travel revenues are unlikely to return to pre-pandemic levels anytime soon.

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Analysts say it could take up to two years for China to fully open up.

In recent years, the Chinese visitor market has become more and more important in Europe. According to Paul Leharn, curator of the museum, the Sherlock Holmes Museum in London, for example, had around 1,000 visitors on its peak day, and at least half of them were from China.

Since opening on May 17, the museum has attracted only 10 percent of its usual number. According to him, this year he opened an online store selling goods and souvenirs, about a third of which are sent to China.

“We really feel their absence,” said Alfonsina Russo, director of the Colosseum in Rome, referring to Chinese tourists.

In Vietnam, the pandemic has resulted in the closure or suspension of more than 95 percent of tourism businesses, according to government figures.

In Bangkok’s Or Tor Kor fruit market, where masses of Chinese tourists once gathered around tables eating durian, business has come to a standstill. Phakamon Tadavattanachok, a durian vendor, said she used to stock 300 to 400 kilograms of pointed fruit and had to restock three to four times a week to keep up with demand. Now she had to take out a loan to make ends meet.

“Loss of income immeasurably, ”she said. “For now, we only hope that it gets better one day.”

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
World Nation News is a digital news portal website. Which provides important and latest breaking news updates to our audience in an effective and efficient ways, like world’s top stories, entertainment, sports, technology and much more news.
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