China now grants tourist destination status to 26 African countries, according to an action plan endorsed by Chinese and African leaders during the just-concluded Beijing summit.
"With the new decision of the Chinese government to extend the Approved Destination Status (ADS) to nine African countries including Algeria, Cape Verde, Cameroon, Gabon, Rwanda, Mali, Mozambique, Benin and Nigeria, there are now 26 ADS countries in Africa," says the document adopted at the Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation.
The number of Chinese tourists to Africa reached 110,000 in 2005, doubling the 2004 figure, according to the Exit-Entry Administration Bureau of the Public Security Ministry.
The Chinese Government will extend ADS to more African countries at their request, says the Action Plan. "China-Africa co-operation in the tourism industry will help promote understanding and friendship between their peoples," it says.
Chinese tourists can get visas to African countries within seven working days, according to Lin Bo, an executive with China International Travel Service, the country's largest travel service provider.
(CCTV.com November 9, 2006)