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Tourism Industry Faces Tough Season as Mainland Tourists Decline


 Tourism Industry Faces Tough Season as Mainland Tourists Decline

 Sources: All Taipei newspapers

 April 14, 2016

The usual peak tourism season is around the corner, but Taiwan’s tourism industry is facing an uphill battle due to the decline in the number of Mainland tourists visiting Taiwan. Andrew Hsia (夏立言), chairman of the Mainland Affairs Council, yesterday admitted to legislators during an interpellation session at the Legislative Yuan that the decline in Mainland tourists might be a signal the Mainland authorities were sending to the incoming DPP administration. 

Jiufen (九份), a mountainous town, is famous for its goldmine relics and one of the hottest tourist spots in New Taipei City. Jiufen’s tourism industry, including chartered bus and taxi services, B&Bs, local guided tour services, restaurants, and souvenir shops, is facing a severe downturn in business. Other popular tourist destinations around Taiwan are also in the same boat, so there may be a wave of business shutdowns coming all over the island. 

Tang Yu-kuan (唐羽寬), who owns a B&B in Jiufen, noted that restaurants and souvenir shops suffered the most as a result of the decline in the number of Mainland tourists. A taxi driver complained that he had been able to pick up one group of passengers every hour over the last few years, but now he needed to wait for at least two hours to pick up a fare. 

Vendors and restaurants in Kenting (墾丁), a popular seaside destination in southern Taiwan, complained that revenues have recently declined by 20 to 30 percent. 

Alishan (阿里山), a mountainous national park famous for its lush forests, including many old-growths in Chiayi County, is one of the most popular destinations for Mainland tourists. The Chiayi district management office of the Forestry Bureau, under the Council of Agriculture, noted that about 600 Mainland tour groups, or 13,000 tourists, had visited Alishan during the Labor Day (May 1) holiday last year, but only 29 Mainland tour groups, or about 2,000 tourists, made plans to visit Alishan as of yesterday.


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