2018 was the year of EU-China tourism; everything probably started from there: the aim was to increase the number of visitors, promote sustainable tourism and encourage investment opportunities for both Europe and China, but also facilitate the issuance of visas and air connectivity between the two sides.
Much has been done since then and recently Italy has been at the forefront of establishing direct relations with the eastern country. During the month of March, in fact, the so-called Memorandum on the Silk Road was signed, with 29 agreements signed. Specifically, there are 19 institutional agreements:
1 – Silk Road: creation of the 21st century Maritime Silk Road;
2 – Startups: collaboration between innovative and technological startups;
3 – electricity trade;
4 – taxation: elimination of double taxation in the field of income tax and prevention of tax evasion and avoidance;
5 – citrus fruits: export of fresh citrus fruits from Italy to China;
6 – cultural heritage: prevention of theft, illegal excavations, imports, exports, illegal trafficking and transit of cultural heritage, as well as the promotion of their return;
7 – archaeological objects: restitution of 796 archaeological objects belonging to the Chinese cultural heritage;
8 – health: cooperation between the Ministries of the two countries;
9 – meat exports: inspection, quarantine and health requirements for the export of frozen pork from Italy to China;
10 – bovine seed: identification of health requirements for the export of bovine seed from Italy to China;
11 – political consultations;
12 – UNESCO sites: twinning aimed at the promotion, conservation, knowledge, enhancement and use of Italian and Chinese sites on the UNESCO World Heritage lists;
13 – scientific cooperation: strengthening of cooperation on Science, Technology and Innovation;
14 – twinning pact between the city of Verona and the city of Hangzhou: promotion of knowledge, enhancement and use of the respective sites on the UNESCO World Heritage lists;
15 – wine-rice twinning between the Association for the Heritage of Wine Landscapes of Langhe-Roero and Monferrato and the Management Committee for the Heritage of Rice Terraces of Honghe Hani of Yunnan;
16 – space: cooperation between the Italian Space Agency and the China National Space Administration;
17 – radio and TV: collaboration between Rai-Radiotelevisione Italiana and the China Media Group;
18 – media: agreement between three Ansa and Xinhua;
19 – research.
The remaining 10 agreements are trade agreements.
From the point of view of tourism, as you can read, much will focus on cooperation between the respective UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The influx of Chinese tourists into the world has increased exponentially in recent years and will continue to do so at a rapid pace, especially in Italy. It is estimated that more than 21 million will choose Europe as their destination, and of these more than 10-15%, will be directed to Italy. The Chinese, in fact, have always been extremely fascinated by our country, rich in historical and cultural features, architectural beauty and an unmistakable culinary tradition.
Calabria, if it knows how to “play” this further possibility of growth, may become one of the favorite tourist destinations for tourists with “almond eyes”, already the flows to our region in recent years have increased. Of course, is that all local operators in the tourism industry will have to “study” well this market, its characteristics and its needs … starting with saying: 欢迎来到卡拉布里亚