Beijing played host to 436,000 overseas tourists in the first two months of the year, a year-on-year rise of 6.7 percent, said sources with the municipal statistics bureau Saturday.
Of the overseas tourists, 360,000 came from foreign countries for an increase of 6.4 percent and 76,000 were from Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macao, and their numbers jumped 8.2 percent over the same period last year.
In January and February, the number of Japanese tourists climbed to 67,000, up 24.5 percent year on year, accounting for 15.3 percent of all overseas tourists. Travelers from the Republic of Korea also rose notably to 64,000, an increase of 8.7 percent.
Since 2005, the number of tourists from Taiwan who have visited the capital has been on the rise. In the first two months, more than 31,000 tourists from Taiwan toured in Beijing, up 26.8 percent over the same period last year. The number of travelers from Hong Kong, however, declined to 43,000, a drop of 2.8 percent.
Beijing's major scenic spots attracted nearly 12 million visitors from both home and abroad in the first two months this year, earning the sites 330 million yuan, up 35.6 percent year on year.
(Xinhua News Agency March 19, 2007)