27 Mar 2013

Chinese tourism numbers grow

7:43 am on 27 March 2013

Chinese tourists surpassed Britons as the second biggest group of international visitors to this country in the year to February.

More than 200,000 Chinese visitors injected $651 million into the economy during the past year, and the Government is pushing for the Chinese tourism spend to increase to more than $1 billion by 2015.

New Zealand China Trade Association chairman Tim White warns that if New Zealanders do not provide what the tourists want, Chinese investors will come in and do it for them.

Mr White says it is time for more New Zealand investment through new hotel infrastructure.

Shong Gee Jow helps Queenstown companies promote their services in China and says some New Zealand operators are struggling.

He says Chinese visitors are very demanding, because they need to fight hard to get what they want, and there can be some cultural misunderstanding.