China generated 5.4 trillion yuan, about 832 billion U.S. dollars, from tourism last year, according to Li Jinzao, head of the China National Tourism Administration (CNTA).
Li gave the figure at a tourism conference in Xiamen in east China’s Fujian Province Monday. It covered spending by local and foreign tourists.
On average, every Chinese person made 3.7 trips last year, Li said.
Over 5 billion trips were made across China last year, generating a total estimated revenue of 4.57 trillion yuan in 2017 — a 69-percent jump from 2012 and average annual growth of 15.8 percent over the past five years. Meanwhile, 129 million overseas trips were made last year.
Tourism has created more than 80 million jobs and became an important industry to help the economy and reduce poverty, Li said.
To better regulate the domestic tourism market, CNTA downgraded three 5A tourist destinations and warned or criticised more than 400 scenic areas for poor service and substandard hygiene over the past three years, Li said.
He also introduced a three-step goal for China’s tourism industry to lead China to become a strong tourism country by 2040.