Sydney and NSW will receive a significant tourism boost from thousands of Chinese visitors, as the first Xiamen Airlines flight arrived in Sydney this week.
NSW Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events Stuart Ayres said the inaugural flight came after the recent announcement of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Destination NSW and Chinese carrier, Xiamen Airlines.
“We are delighted to welcome the first Xiamen Airlines flight to Sydney today and the opportunity to showcase our beautiful city, award-winning restaurants, world-class shopping and surrounding regions of NSW to Chinese visitors as a result of our partnership with Xiamen Airlines,” Ayres said.
“China is NSW’s largest trading partner, largest inbound international tourism market, greatest source of international students and an increasingly important source of investment into NSW.
“The NSW Government remains committed to working with Chinese and Australian airlines to increase visitation to Sydney and NSW, helping maintain our position as Australia’s number one tourism and events State.”
Destination NSW Chief Executive Officer, Sandra Chipchase, said NSW welcomed 526,000 Chinese visitors last financial year who spent almost AUD$2 billion.
“These phenomenal figures demonstrate the positive influence of the work Destination NSW is doing through its airline partnerships in China and we welcome the addition of Xiamen Airlines to Sydney,” she said.
“The new Xiamen Airlines services will deliver a strong economic impact for the NSW tourism industry and as part of our MoU, we will continue to highlight the fantastic tourism products, experiences and events in Sydney and Regional NSW for Chinese visitors,” Chipchase said.
Sydney Airport Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Kerrie Mather, said Xiamen Airlines is expected to bring an additional 36,000 Chinese visitors to Sydney each year, contributing an anticipated $136 million in additional annual visitor expenditure to NSW.
“Sydney is the gateway to Australia for Chinese travellers, so we’re thrilled to welcome Xiamen Airlines to Sydney Airport, providing the 38 million residents of China’s Fujian Province with a direct route to Sydney and NSW,” she said.
The three weekly Fuzhou – Sydney service commenced on Nov 30. The twice-weekly Xiamen – Sydney service will commence on 6 December and will increase to four services per week in February for the Chinese New Year period.