(Yicai) Dec. 13 — Both inbound and outbound tourism will become bright spots, industry professionals said after China’s annual Central Economic Work Conference stressed the importance of actively nurturing culture and entertainment tourism consumption as growth points.

Tourism will likely emerge as a consumption growth point for the culture and tourism sectors, mainly thanks to the implementation of favorable visa policies, Zhou Weihong, vice general manager at Shanghai Chunqiu International Travel Agency Group, told Yicai. More customized culture and tourism products are expected to appear next year to further enhance tourism services, Zhou noted.

The two-day CEWC that ended yesterday said that China should promote consumption to shift to sustainable expansion from post-pandemic recovery, incubate and expand new types of consumption, such as digital, green, and health consumption, and actively cultivate new consumption growth points, such as spending on smart furniture, culture, entertainment, tourism, and sports.

Cultivating new consumption growth points will present key development opportunities for domestic and inbound tourism, Zhang Zhining, chief executive of tourism consultancy firm Kaopu Tourism, told Yicai. The Chinese culture, entertainment, and tourism markets would have larger potential and innovation power through multi-factor fusion development with the help of supporting policies, Zhang said.

The inbound tourism market is likely to achieve breakthroughs next year, he noted, adding that the outbound tourism market will also be a big consumption growth point.

Culture and entertainment events began to drive China’s tourism market this year. Some 111 million people watched performances in the country in the first three quarters of the year, exceeding the level in 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a report recently released by Tongcheng Travel and the China Association of Performing Arts.

The popularity of the performance market had a significant impact on tourism consumption this year, as the premium rate of hotels in popular cities’ core areas exceeded 40 percent when large-scale performances were held.

Editors: Xu Wei, Futura Costaglione