China Unveils 14th Five-Year Plan for Culture and Tourism, Vowing to Enrich Tourist Products and Promote Paid Leave

Source:Organizing_Committee    |      Date:2021-06-08

  China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism on June 2 released the 14th five-year plan for the development of cultural and tourism sectors for the 2021-2025 period.

  The plan sets out the major tasks of developing culture and tourism, which can be summarized as “one project and seven systems”, namely advancing social civility, establishing the artistic creation system for a new era, improving the protection, inheritance and utility of cultural heritage, improving the modern public cultural service system, refining the modern cultural industry system, enhancing the modern tourism system, improving the modern cultural and tourism market system, and developing a system of cultural exchanges and tourism promotion with foreign countries and with China’s Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan.

  

  (Photo Credit: The WeChat official account “mctgov”)

  The plan pledges to promote structural upgrading of the cultural sector through the use of cloud, big data and intelligent technologies, advance the coordinated development of cultural industries among regions and between urban and rural areas, and boost the development of rural cultural industries. It proposes to stimulate and guide cultural consumption and encourage local governments to adopt consumption promotion policies and hold consumption promotion activities, promote the integrated development of cultural and related industries, develop a number of national demonstration zones for the integrated development of the cultural industry and tourism industry, and strengthen international cooperation in the field of culture, especially with the counties and regions along the Belt and Road.

  Tourist products will be further enriched, and efforts will be increased to develop new products such as national cultural parks, “red tourism”, rural tourism, sports tourism, ice and snow tourism, marine tourism and leisure tourism. The paid leave system will be implemented across the board to expand holiday consumption and meet the tourism needs of the public.

  To advance the development of smart tourism, the plan proposes to promote the integration of the Internet and tourism, develop smart products and bring tourism resources to life by using digital technology, and foster a new development mode of “online experience + consumption.” Smart management of tourist attractions will be strengthened to limit the number of tourists, facilitate reservations and encourage staggered travel. In addition, efforts will be made to improve smart services and promote innovation in tourist service modes, strengthen smart marketing, and build online flagship stores and a convenient marketing network.

  The 2020 China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS) was held in Beijing from September 4 to 9, 2020. As one of the eight thematic exhibitions set up during the Fair, the tourism services exhibition area featured a “tourism + 5G” zone, which showcased how technologies such as 5G, 8K, big data and artificial intelligence can empower tourism, offered immersive interactive experiences and demonstrated all-new application scenarios. In the tourism public service exhibition area, visitors could use their smartphones to look up the virtual guides, travel tips and hand-painted maps of Class-A scenic areas in Beijing and get hands-on with the convenience delivered by smart tourist services. Harnessing the power of technology, a “digital Yuanmingyuan” that is audible, visible and sensible was presented in the Haidian exhibition area, enabling visitors to experience the glorious Chinese traditional garden art without making a trip to the heritage site.

  

  (Photo Credit: The Beijing News)

  At the World Conference on Tourism Cooperation and Development held during the Fair. Chen Jining, Chairman of the World Tourism Cities Federation, Deputy Secretary of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee and Mayor of Beijing, described the tourism industry as a resilient industry, noting that massive epidemics always bring about drastic changes to tourism consumption and tourist services. The COVID-19 pandemic has not upended people’s enthusiasm about tourism but given rise to a series of new decentralized, personalized and reservation-based tourism modes, unlocking new opportunities for the recovery of the tourism industry and the economy.

  

  (Photo Credit: World Tourism Cities Federation)

  Hu Heping, China’s Minister of Culture and Tourism, said at the conference that while coping with the pandemic, the Ministry has organized free online training, carried out digital transformation programs for culture and tourism businesses to boost smart tourism, strengthened management of the tourism market and industry, and worked to improve the industry’s development ability. The 14th five-year plan will take high-quality development as the main line and lay out a number of major policies and initiatives.

  Hu said that enterprises are at the core of the tourism industry and should take the initiative to look for new opportunities amid the crisis and strive to break new ground. He suggested enterprises enhance capacity building, map out development strategies, and explore new products and new models. Furthermore, the tourism market should be reopened in an orderly manner depending on the development of the pandemic. In particular, emerging technologies such as big data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence can be leveraged to develop smart tourism, and the mechanisms of tourist limit, reservations and staggered travel can be implemented to improve the quality of tourism development.