East China’s Anhui province has nurtured 206 tourism-oriented townships, as part of its efforts to boost the tourism sector, the local economic watchdog said Wednesday.
By developing and operating their own tourism resources in a market-based way, tourism-oriented towns center on the traveling industry and make it a major driving force for the growth of other local sectors such as catering, real estate and logistics, said a source with the Development and Reform Commission of Anhui Province.
In breakdown, 68 tourism-oriented towns are called resource-dominated ones as most of them have been designated by the government as “historical and cultural towns”, which boast typical architecture and rich folk culture.
Home to 4A-rated or 5A-rated scenic spots, 53 towns feature tourist reception, while another 64, known for favorable living environment, highlight rural tourism, which attracts urban residents interested in rural lifestyles.
The remaining characteristic-industry-themed townships focus on the orderly flow of factors of production between urban and rural areas.
The tourism industry in those 200-odd towns employs 905,900 people, the source noted.
Statistics showed Anhui's tourism-based towns received 122.0 million visitors in 2015, making up 27.2 percent of the provincial total. Nearly 1.2 million out of them came from overseas, accounting for 26.3 percent of foreign tourists the province welcomed during the same year. Meanwhile, their tourism revenue stood at 32.5 billion yuan ($4.7 billion), or 7.9 percent of the provincial total.