01 April 2019, Apia Samoa. A fireworks display at the Apia Harbour this evening will mark the official launch of the China Pacific Tourism Year 2019.
Hundreds of people mostly families with young children will remember the magnificent display of fireworks gifted by the Chinese Government on New Years eve this year. A similar display of fireworks is expected tonight, to be fired up from a barge on the water in the Apia Harbour area.
The show will start at 8:30 pm after the launch of the Chinese-Pacific Tourism Develooment initiative that aims to promote the Pacific as a tourist destination to the Chinese market.
Samoa Tourism Authority as current Chair of the the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) have said that, “the China-Pacific Tourism Year 2019 builds on an SPTO strategy to establish innovative partnerships and in this case, with the China Ministry of Culture and Tourism.”
China is the world’s largest source market for tourism with and outbound of 140 million people estimated in 2018 alone. Only 125 thousand of that market visited the Pacific representing less than 6% of the total visitor share for the Pacific.
Last week Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi publicly announced that this year will mark the year of partnership between China and Pacific Island countries to promote tourism.
“The tourism industry is a growing industry and once the Chinese want to visit Samoa, our hotels will be booming where thousands of our children are employed; to provide for their families, pay their tithing and send their children to school;
“The direct charter tourist flights from China to Samoa will start in July. The new chapter in tourism development for Samoa will have a positive impact on the hotel industry and other sectors,” he said.