Starting on the 27th of March, the Chinese city of Jiaxing will be home to a Drents cultural embassy, a new initiative aimed at boosting Chinese tourism in the Netherlands.
Translation by Thomas Ansell
The so-called “tourism embassy” is the first of its kind for a Dutch province, according to RTV Drenthe.
In October of 2018, the province of Drenthe and the city council of Jiaxing signed a friendship treaty, and the opening of the new Drenths embassy is emblematic of this agreement. The goal of the embassy is to increase cultural exchange and tourism between the city of Jiaxing, which has a population of around 4.5 million people, and the province of Drenthe, which has roughly 492,000 inhabitants.
In the embassy, Chinese tour operators can avail themselves of all necessary information about the province. A small Drents delegation took a trip to China in March, led by alderperson Jan Zwiers in his role as chief of Recreation in Drenthe, to attend a large Chinese tourism fair, during which agreements between Drents businesses and around 200 Chinese tour operators were signed. “In the first instance, we have chosen to pursue group tours”, say Zwiers. “In the near future we can approach individual tourists.”
The province has been seeking to profile itself as an attractive tourist destination for Chinese travellers in recent years. In May of 2018, a handful of Chinese tour operators visited the cultural high points of the province with the goal of eventually setting up tours.