More Chinese visitors to Vietnam

The Vietnamese tourism authority says Vietnam is expected to receive about 1 million Chinese holidaymakers this year, double last year's number.

Nguyen Van Tuan, general director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), attributes the rise to a series of promotional campaigns run in major Chinese cities over the last two years. He says China was a key market for the country's tourism industry.   

According to VNAT, 437,000 tourists from China visited Vietnam in the half of this year, 92.5 percent more than the same period last year.  

La Quoc Khanh, deputy director of the HCM City Department for Culture, Sports and Tourism, says the number of Chinese holidaymakers visiting the south was rising by 25 percent annually.   

Lien Bang Travelink says by July tourists using the company's services have increased by 30 percent in numbers from a year ago.   

According to Tu Quy Thanh, the company's director, high-end travellers from China are now spending more money than their counterparts from the West. He says Vietnam could not compete with regional countries such as Bangkok and Singapore in terms of shopping malls or medical facilities, or Indonesia and Japan in terms of array of cultural attractions and luxury products.   

However, he says that Hanoi, Ha Long Bay and   HCM   City   are proving increasingly attractive to Chinese holidaymakers.