China-Australia Tourism Dialogue 2017 held in Beijing

On 29 August 2017, Austrade attended the sixth annual China-Australia Tourism Dialogue in Beijing, hosted by the China National Tourism Administration (CNTA).

The Australian delegation was led by Dan Williams (a/g General Manager, Tourism Division) and included representatives from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Tourism Australia, and the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

The Dialogue provides a forum for representatives from both the Australian and Chinese governments to discuss tourism matters of mutual interest.

The Dialogue this year included an update on tourism and related policies, such as Tourism 2020, tourism research initiatives, the China Destination Development Mission on 13-15 September, and enhancements to visa processing. The dialogue also included a discussion on initiatives under the China-Australia Year of Tourism and the Approved Destination Status scheme.

At the meeting, the CNTA reiterated their positive views on the administration of the Approved Destination Status scheme, progress on the Year of Tourism to date and broader cooperation on tourism matters.

Australia–China Memorandum of Understanding on strengthening tourism cooperation

In April 2011, Australia and China's commitment to strengthening tourism cooperation was reinforced through the signing of a five-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Australian Government and the China National Tourism Administration. In April 2016, the MOU was updated by Prime Minister Turnbull and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during Australia Week in China. The updated MOU continues the successful partnership on tourism cooperation in areas such as marketing, and supply-side issues such as labour and skills development, investment, research and infrastructure.

The MOU aims to increase tourism flows and strengthen people-to-people links between the two countries. The MOU continues the Approved Destination Status (ADS) scheme while promoting cooperation in emerging travel segments such as individual, education and company-paid incentive travel. Under the MOU, an annual Australia–China Tourism Dialogue is held. This dialogue provides an opportunity for the Australian and Chinese governments to cooperate on tourism and passenger facilitation, discuss any current issues regarding the administration of the ADS scheme, discuss the status of tourism marketing activities and provide an update on tourism research activities. Since 2011, the Dialogue has alternated between Australia and China. The fifth Dialogue was held in Australia in August 2016, where Australian and Chinese officials committed to cooperate on key activities, including supporting each other for promotional and event activities during the 2017 China-Australia Year of Tourism.

China-Australia Year of Tourism 2017

Official 2017 China-Australia Year of Tourism logo
Official 2017 China-Australia Year of Tourism logo

On 5 February 2017, the China-Australia Year of Tourism 2017 (YOT) was jointly launched at the Sydney Opera House by Dr Li Jinzao, Chairman China National Tourism Administration, and the Hon Steven Ciobo MP, Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment. The opening ceremony was attended by around 2,000 guests.

A program of significant events is planned in both Australia and China during the YOT. Australia’s events include Ministerial trade missions to China, marketing and airline partnerships, a business events showcase, sporting and cultural events, and a closing ceremony in China. China’s events include an arrival ceremony at the ancient city gate of Xi’an for 1,000 Australian tourists and a panda caravan tour in Australia.

Australian tourism event and business owners are participating by co-branding their product with the YOT. Access to the YOT logo is by application through Tourism Australia’s website. Access is granted provided one or more of the following criteria are met:

  • have established links to the Chinese outbound tourism market;
  • promote diversity, growth and innovation in the Australia-China tourism relationship; or
  • promote Australian arts, creative industries and sporting events to the China travel market or to Chinese tourists in Australia.

Events or entities deemed not to be conducive to furthering the Australia-China relationship will be ineligible to co-brand as part of the YOT.

For more information about the Year of Tourism, please contact Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on tourism@dfat.gov.au.