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Japan, China, S. Korea to jointly tackel tourism predicament (2011/05/29)
2013/7/26 18:09:19 Views:

Japan, China, S. Korea to jointly tackel tourism predicament (2011/05/29)


PYEONGCHANG, South Korea, May 29, Kyodo

Tourism ministers from Japan, China and South Korea agreed Sunday to jointly work out crisis management guidelines to address critical events that negatively affect tourism, such as natural disasters, terrorism and outbreaks of infectious diseases.

In a joint statement issued after their meeting in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the ministers confirmed that the public and private sectors of the three countries will jointly mull measures to overcome the negative effects stemming from Japan's March 11 earthquake and tsunami, and subsequent nuclear crisis.

They agreed to offer maximum cooperation in issuing adequate information in the event of critical incidents and to promote special campaigns for the recovery of the tourism industry.

At a joint news conference after the meeting, Japan's Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Akihiro Ohata said, ''I was able to have (China and South Korea) understand that Japan is safe.''
Shao Qiwei, director general of the China National Tourism Administration, said the envisaged crisis management guidelines would ''help prevent damage from misinformation and losses to the tourism industry.''

South Korean culture minister Choung Byoung Gug told the press conference that it is important for Japan to provide information about the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The ministers decided to hold the next trilateral tourism ministerial meeting in Japan's Tohoku region in 2012 as part of efforts to support reconstruction in the area hit hard by the earthquake and tsunami. The meeting was initially scheduled to be held in Japan in 2013.

The ministers met at a time when the March 11 quake and tsunami disaster and the ongoing nuclear crisis are hitting Japan's tourism industry.

According to estimates by the Japan National Tourism Organization, the number of foreign tourists who visited Japan in April plunged 62.5 percent from a year earlier.

South Korea and China rank first and second in terms of the country-by-country share of foreign tourists visiting Japan. The organization estimates that South Korea accounted for 28.3 percent of tourists visiting Japan in 2010 and China for 16.4 percent.

At the trilateral meeting, the ministers also agreed to jointly develop 10 ''golden tour routes'' linking the three countries. To attract tourists from outside of the three countries, they agreed to promote joint advertising and provide tourist information in English as well as Japanese, Chinese and Korean.