China's Three Gorges Dam attracted a record high of 1.25 million tourist arrivals last year, a year-on-year increase of six percent, according to tourism developers.
The dam received 310,000 foreign tourists in 2007, up 35 percent from 2006, said Xu Ting, a marketing clerk with the Yangtze River Three Gorges Tourism Development Co., Ltd.
2007 was also the third consecutive year for the dam to host more than one million tourists, according to Xu.
The dam area will see more tourists this year thanks to the great national events of the basic completion of the Three Gorges Project within the year and the Olympic Games in August, Xu added.
The company launched chartered flight business in May last year in cooperation with travel agencies in Hong Kong and Taiwan to develop the market in these areas.
The Three Gorges Airport was approved in November to open to overseas passengers, making it possible for foreign tourists to fly directly to Yichang, Hubei Province where the dam is located, on international or region lines.
The 22.5-billion-U.S.-dollar Three Gorges hydropower project was launched in 1993 in the mid-section of the Yangtze River, China's longest. Its 26 turbo-generators are designed to eventually produce 84.7 billion kwh of electricity a year after its scheduled completion in 2008.
(Xinhua News Agency January 7, 2008)