On the morning of August 4 (local time) in South Africa, the Secretariat of the World Tourism Alliance (WTA), at the invitation of the organizer, attended the South Africa-China Tourism Cooperation Virtual International Forum: Opening New Horizons, having online communication with the experts and scholars in tourism education and representatives of associations from both countries. Liu Shijun, Secretary-General of WTA, addressed the opening ceremony of the forum.
Organized by the Center for Africa-China Studies of University of Johannesburg, the forum aimed to discuss topics such as post-epidemic tourism recovery and restart, cultural tourism and poverty alleviation, tourism investment in South Africa and China, and legal system guarantee of international tourism. Industry representatives and professors from organizations (comprising China Tourism Academy of Culture & Tourism, School of Tourism and Hospitality of University of Johannesburg, Sun Yat-sen University, Nanjing Tech University, South African Tourism Services Association and Zhejiang Provincial Tourism Association) were invited at the forum to speak online. In addition to WTA, Fish Mahlalela, Deputy Minister of the Department of Tourism of South Africa, Xie Jinying, Director of the Bureau of International Exchange and Cooperation, Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China and Li Zhigang, Minister in the Embassy of China in South Africa, and other officials attended and addressed the forum.
In his speech, Liu Shijun introduced the coordinated response and market recovery of Chinese tourism industry since the outbreak of the epidemic, reminding the industry of the poverty caused by the epidemic and the positive role of tourism in promoting economic growth and alleviating poverty. He said that with the regular epidemic prevention and control, more open and full communication should be made in the tourism industry, so that we could better understand each other and establish cooperation to embrace new transformation and challenges. As a comprehensive non-governmental platform for international exchanges in the field of tourism, WTA was willing to pool the strength of its global members and partners to facilitate international exchanges and cooperation in revitalization through tourism and poverty reduction, and made continuous efforts for the early recovery and better development of the global tourism.