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Tourism Ireland outlines China growth strategy as trade visit begins

Tourism Ireland is doubling its marketing investment in China, to €1 million, and will also double its marketing team to 12 over the coming months.

The destination aims to grow Chinese visitor numbers to 200,000 by 2025.

The announcement was made by Ireland tourism minister, Shane Ross, ahead of Tourism Ireland’s largest ever sales mission to China.

A record 26 tourism businesses, as well as five island of Ireland tourism industry leaders, will visit Guangzhou, Chengdu, Shanghai and Beijing this week, to meet hundreds of travel agents and tour operators, as well as key airlines and travel journalists.

On the back of last year’s increase of 11 per cn Chinese visitors to Ireland, and following several years of steady growth, Tourism Ireland is ramping up its investment in China to €1 million, as part of the Global Ireland initiative.

Under the new strategy, Tourism Ireland will increase its focus on promoting to Chinese consumers in key cities with direct flights to Dublin and in prominent gateway regions and target high end independent travellers.

Tourism Ireland will also continue to work with leading online travel agents and tour operators in the market and undertake a second 2019 sales mission to China this autumn, which will take in Hong Kong and Shenzhen.

Ross said: “I am happy to announce that Tourism Ireland is doubling its marketing budget as part of its growth strategy in China, the world’s fastest-growing outbound travel market.

“This investment was made possible as a result of the significant additional funding that I allocated to Tourism Ireland in the budget for 2019.

“This will help us deliver on the ambitious targets set for tourism in the government’s Global Ireland 2025 initiative.

“This sets out how we will take Ireland’s global engagement to the next level over the coming years.

“As part of this, Tourism Ireland, with the support of Fáilte Ireland, will implement its market growth strategies in several new and emerging markets like China.”

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