Facts for media and press


On September 1, 2016, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang announced that 2018 would be the Canada-China Year of Tourism (CCYT). This celebration is an opportunity to build stronger people-to-people ties through tourism. Such relationships can open up new opportunities for other kinds of collaboration, including business-to-business opportunities. This initiative is being led by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada in support of Canada's New Tourism Vision.

Did You Know?

  • There are approximately 1.8 million Chinese Canadians living all across the country.
  • Mandarin and Cantonese are Canada's third and fourth most widely spoken languages.

Tourism is a vital component of Canada's economy, representing 2 percent of our GDP, and is an important source of jobs, a driver of entrepreneurship and the largest employer of youth.

China is Canada's:

  • second-largest trading partner
  • fastest-growing source market for international students
  • third-largest source of tourists

China is the world's largest tourist source market. The number of international outbound tourists from China more than doubled between 2008 and 2015, from 47.7 million tourists to 128 million.

Last year, nearly 700,000 Chinese tourists visited Canada. In 2016, Chinese tourists spent an estimated $1.5 billion when visiting Canada.

Canada-China trade—Canada's second-largest trade relationship—is already worth $90 billion, and it is expected to double in a few years.

Given the size of this market and the opportunity it represents, the Government of Canada is committed to reaching its target of doubling visits from China by 2021. That means working with the tourism sector to improve readiness for the Chinese market and augmenting its marketing programs with partner Destination Canada.

"We want to build on our common interests. We want Chinese visitors to see everything that Canada has to offer—from the northern lights to our amazing East Coast, from our rich cultural heritage in our diverse cities to the unique and unforgettable experiences offered by Indigenous operators across the country," said the Honourable Bardish Chagger, Minister of Small Business and Tourism.

China is hosting a CCYT opening ceremony in late March in Toronto, and Canada will be hosting a closing ceremony in China at the end of the year.

The Government will promote CCYT at events from coast to coast to coast throughout the year.

Last November, Canada opened seven new visa application centres across China. These new centres make it easier for Chinese travellers to get to Canada.

We are working with national and regional tourism associations to raise awareness among tourism businesses about how to be China-ready and to best accommodate the increase in Chinese visitors.

To help accommodate these travellers, consider these tips.

Use the Logo

The Canada-China Year of Tourism logo is a representation of our unity and expresses friendliness and togetherness. The logo is inspired by circular designs found in Canadian and Chinese society and culture, such as coins, Chinese calligraphy and the yin-yang. The polar bear and panda bear (popular bears of both countries) create a symbolic and playful feel. We encourage tourism operators to use the free Canada-China Year of Tourism logo to publicize CCYT events and promotions, as well as to promote their businesses to Chinese travellers. See the Logo guidelines for more details.

For media inquiries, contact us at ic.mediarelations-mediasrelations.ic@canada.ca.

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