BANGKOK, 17 June 2013: The Japanese government plans to exempt short-term tourists from Thailand for having to obtain a visa and incorporate the measure into an action programme to help spur the nation’s tourism industry.
The exemption is part of an initiative to triple travel to the country to over 30 million trips by 2030.
The government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe approved the polic, last Tuesday, although he did not elaborate when the new measure would take effect. He suggested it would be introduced ahead of the summer season.
HONG KONG, 14 June 2013: Hong Kong opened a US$1.1 billion cruise terminal at the site of its former airport on Wednesday in a bid to become Asia’s hub for luxury liners.
The new terminal, built on the runway of the old Kai Tak airport, will be able to accommodate the largest cruise ships in the world — liners of up to 220,000 gross tonnes.
“Kai Tak was the site of our legendary airport and is now turning a historic page by connecting Hong Kong with the rest of the world through the seven seas,” Commissioner of Tourism Philip Yung said.
SEOUL, 29 May 2013: North Korean leader, Kim Jong-Un, has inspected work on a “world class” ski resort being built as rival South Korea prepares to host the 2018 Winter Olympic Games, state media reported.
Kim visited the construction site on Masik hill in the northeast of the country on Monday, the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said.
The resort, which could be operational by the end of the year, will boast 110 km (70 miles) of multi-level ski runs, a hotel, heliport and cable cars, KCNA said.
TOKYO, 23 May 2013: A record 923,000 foreigners travelled to Japan in April, up 18% from a year earlier, taking advantage of a weaker yen and an increase in chartered flights, a government agency said Wednesday.
The previous monthly high was 879,000 in July 2010, the Japan National Tourism Organisation said.
Tourism has rebounded since 2011, when visitor numbers plunged following the massive earthquake and tsunami that ravaged Japan’s northeast and sparked a nuclear crisis at the Fukushima power plant in March that year.
MACAU, 22 May 2013: Casino industry leaders met in the world’s biggest gambling hub of Macau on Tuesday for the Global Gaming Expo Asia, a three-day fair of gambling innovations at the glitzy Venetian Macau hotel.
The largest gaming event in Asia, showcasing the industry’s latest products, services and technologies, opens to the public on Wednesday with machine companies focusing on Asian content.
The gaming sector has boomed in Asia over the past decade, led by the former Portugese colony of Macau which now generates more than six times the gambling revenue of Las Vegas thanks mainly to high-rolling Chinese VIPs.
BEIJING, 20 May 2013: The dire manners and “uncivilised behaviour” of some Chinese tourists abroad are harming the country’s image, said a top official who lamented their poor “quality and breeding”, according to state-run media.
Wang Yang, one of China’s four vice premiers, singled out for condemnation “talking loudly in public places, jay-walking, spitting and willfully carving characters on items in scenic zones”.
Such “uncivilised behaviours” were “often criticised by the media and have damaged the image of Chinese people and caused vicious impact”, he said, according to the website of the People’s Daily, the ruling Communist Party’s mouthpiece.
BEIJING, 7 May 2013: The death toll from the H7N9 bird flu outbreak in China has risen to 31, according to official figures, with four more people dying of the virus in China’s eastern provinces.
The number of people infected also increased to 129, official statistics showed, up two since Thursday.
The four new deaths included two from Jiangsu province and one each from Zhejiang and Anhui, according to figures from China’s Health and Family Planning Commission released late Monday.
TOKYO, 2 May 2013: Japan’s Mount Fuji will likely be added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites next month after an influential advisory panel to the UN cultural body made a recommendation, officials said Wednesday.
The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), a consultative body to UNESCO, told the Japanese government that the almost perfectly conical Fuji is appropriate for registering as a World Heritage site, the agency for cultural affairs said in a statement.
Mt. Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan at 3,776 metres (12,460 feet), is expected to be formally listed in June when the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO meets in Cambodia, said an official at the foreign ministry.
SHANGHAI, 18 April 2013: IT&CM China 2013 delegates and travel executives elsewhere can now watch highlights of the event on Youku (China’s own video streaming site) as video clips of the show are released daily until 19 April.
YouTube videos will be available after the event closes.
“Thanks to technology, we are able to bring video highlights of the event from the day before, right to our delegates. These video dailies not only capture the essence of the key sessions that took place, but also give delegates or other industry professionals who are not present, a glimpse into what took place. Complementing the existing printed TTG Show Daily: IT&CM China 2013, this is our way of taking communication with our delegates and the industry to another level.” said TTG Asia Media managing director Darren Ng.
TOKYO, 18 April 2013: Thousands of fans packed Tokyo Disneyland on Monday to celebrate its 30 years anniversary.
Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and dozens of other familiar faces from the annals of Disney history paraded through the 51-hectare (126-acre) park, cheered on by 15,000 people who had turned out to see them.
The resort comprises the Disneyland and DisneySea theme parks as well as three hotels, shopping malls and a monorail line that connects the facilities. It was the first international theme park to open in Asia.