Business travelers from China will drive future tourist traffic in South Africa, says Yuan Wei, who founded one of the earliest Chinese travel agencies in Cape Town, according to a report in ChinaDaily.
Increased business exchanges between China and Africa should be a sweet spot for business tourism on the continent, Yuan said.
Yuan’s business, Walk Through Africa Tours, grew considerably after President Xi Jinping’s visit to South Africa earlier this year, she said.
More than 132,300 Chinese tourists visited South Africa in 2012, a 56 percent year-on-year increase. Kenya, which has done a lot of tourism promotion in China recently, saw nearly 41,300 visitors, a 10.4 percent growth over 2011.
China had 83.18 million outbound tourists in 2012 and about 1.05 million visited African nations. Though that number accounted for just 1.26 percent of the total outbound Chinese tourists, it was a 3.8 percent increase year-on-year. The number of Chinese tourists visiting African countries for sightseeing purposes is projected to exceed 1.15 million by the end of 2013, according to the China Tourism Academy.
Walk Through Africa Tours provides mainly business travel services to Chinese and South Africans.
Yuan has opened offices in Namibia and Tanzania and plans to expand to Botswana and Zambia.