ADDIS ABABA, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- Ethiopia recorded around 37.2 million U.S. dollars in revenue from 9,925 Chinese tourists in 2020, the Ethiopia Ministry of Culture and Tourism (MoCT) disclosed on Tuesday.
China is the second largest source of tourists visiting Ethiopia, only after the United States.
Ethiopia earned 37.2 million U.S. dollars from Chinese tourists in 2020 who came to Ethiopia for a range of purposes including conferences, business trips and seeking leisure.
In a recent interview with Xinhua, the Ethiopian Ambassador to China Teshome Toga, disclosed Ethiopia is working with Chinese tour operators in promoting Ethiopia's tourism sites to the estimated 160 million plus outbound Chinese tourists.
Toga said with the state-owned Ethiopian Airlines being the only African air carrier travelling to five Chinese destinations, the potential to attract more Chinese tourists is enormous.
"We're working with Chinese tour operators in promoting Ethiopia's tourism potential and when the situation with COVID-19 improves, we would like to boost Chinese tourist arrivals to Ethiopia," he further said.
Ethiopian Airlines operates passenger and cargo services to five Chinese destinations -- Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Chengdu and Guangzhou. It also plans to start passenger flights to Shenzhen and Chongqing.
Toga further said Ethiopia is targeting boosting partnership with China in the tourism sector as part of a wider 10-year strategic plan.
"The three outstanding areas I would like to see cooperation in the coming years are technology transfer, tourism and human resource development," Toga told Xinhua.
Toga also said with Ethiopia and China enjoying a comprehensive strategic partnership, the potential growth of the partnership is exponential.
Chinese firms are also helping Ethiopia's drive to create prominent tourist attractions across the east African country.
Last September, Ethiopian President Sahle-Work Zewde commended the progress of Ethiopia's Chinese-built landmark recreational avenue located at the heart of the east African country's capital, Addis Ababa.
Named the Friendship Square it is currently being constructed by the China Communications Construction Company (CCCC). The project is 32 hectares of the first phase.
Among the tourist attraction elements that the Friendship Square incorporated include an embossed wall, portraits of human migration routes and calla-lily-shaped podium.
Already, Ethiopia and China are partnering to start the second phase of Friendship Square, which is expected to include a Palace of Science and Technology, a Wedding Garden and a Children's Park. Enditem