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Maldives tops list of Chinese tourists’ favourite island spots

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Beijing :The Maldives has topped a list of 20 island destinations most favoured by Chinese tourists, who have been the world’s No 1 cross-border visitors for the past three years, spending billions of dollars on outbound tours.

The announcement was made at the 2015 International Islands Tourism Conference in east China’s Zhejiang Province.

Taiwan, Bali, and Thailand’s Phuket Island have also been favoured by Chinese tourists in the list, which was created after a poll by the conference’s organisation committee and after evaluation by an expert panel.

The poll began in June, drawing more than three million responses for more than 70 destinations. The poll was conducted via the committee’s website, and some other portals and microblog services.

Chinese islands filled five spots on the list, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

China has been the world’s No 1 source of cross-border tourists since 2012, according to the World Tourism Organisation. In 2013, the organization said, Chinese outbound travelers spent a total of USD 129 billion.

China’s outbound tourists made nearly 24 million trips to islands in 2014, and the number is likely to exceed 30 million this year.

China’s outbound tourism has grown dramatically in recent months despite its economy economy contacted sharply. The World Bank recently revised its projections for China’s economic growth from 7.1 per cent to 6.9 per cent.

The conference, which concludes tomorrow on Zhujiajian Island of Zhoushan City, was organized by China’s National Tourism Administration and the provincial government of Zhejiang province.

PTI