PHNOM PENH, Dec. 13 -- Representatives of 17 tourism- related companies from southeast Guangdong province of China on Friday met with their Cambodian counterparts in order to seek possibilities for tourism cooperation.
The Chinese delegation was led by Zhao Yufang, Vice-Governor of Guangdong Province, while Cambodian side was headed by Pak Sokhom, Under Secretary of State at the Cambodian Ministry of Tourism.
Zhao Yufang said the delegation's visit to Cambodia was to celebrate the 55th anniversary of the China-Cambodia diplomatic ties and to further promote tourism cooperation between Guangdong province and Cambodia.
She said last year, Guangdong greeted 22,000 Cambodian visitors, up 2 percent year-on-year, while 167,000 Chinese in Guangdong visited Cambodia, up 51 percent.
"Excellent ties between the Chinese government and the Cambodian government have encouraged peoples of the two countries to visit each other more often," she said.
Zhao Yufang pledged to promote Cambodian tourism destinations to Guangdong people and to encourage more Chinese investors to Cambodia for tourism-related businesses.
Guangdong has a lot of renowned tourism destinations including Kaiping Diaolou and Villages, which is one of the World Heritage sites, and Danxia Mountain, Yuexiu Hill in Guangzhou, Star Lake and the Seven Star Crags, Dinghu Mountain, and the Zhongshan Sun Wen Memorial Park for Sun Yat-sen.
Pak Sokhom said China was a leading investor in Cambodian tourism. Currently, 28 tour and travel companies, 5 hotels, and many restaurants invested by Chinese companies are operating in Cambodia.
Besides, seven Chinese airlines have launched regular flights to Cambodia--they are China Airline, China Southern Airline, China Eastern Airline, Dragon Air, Shanghai Airlines, Air China, and Tianjin Airline.
"With close ties between the two countries, I believe that tourism cooperation between Cambodia and China will be further broadened for the benefits of the two countries and peoples," he said.
Cambodia's most attractive tourism sites are the Angkor Archeological Park, a World Heritage site, and the pristine coastline of 450 km stretching over four provinces.
China is the second largest source of tourists to Cambodia. During the first ten months of this year, some 376,570 Chinese tourists had visited Cambodia, up 42 percent year-on-year, he said.
At the end of the meeting, Zhao Yufang and Pak Sokhom witnessed the signing on tourism cooperation agreements between Guangdong's tour and travel companies and their Cambodian counterparts.