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Governor renews tourism promotion with Shanghai

Date Posted: 2006-08-03

Okinawa’s governor has stepped up efforts to increase tourism between the prefecture and China’s Shanghai City.

Governor Keiichi Inamine and his staff spent the week in Shanghai meeting with Mayor Kansei and municipal agencies to work a plan for luring more Chinese to Okinawa. A key talking point was getting the China East Air Line Company to increase its flight frequency between Naha and Shanghai from the current twice a week schedule.

“We will consider an increase to three flights a week, starting in 2007,” the Shanghai City mayor promised. “We would love to support Okinawan tourism business. We love the Okinawan ocean,” he said. “It is beautiful and we want our city to promote tours to Okinawa.” At the same time, the mayor questioned Governor Inamine about the rules of supply and demand, pointing out that China East Air Lines had been flying daily between Okinawa and Shanghai since 2000.

That schedule was cut to twice weekly last year, because average flights were only 60% filled with passengers. The Okinawa Tourism Office in Shanghai established there in 2005 says it homes to generate more travel interest, and thus support the need for more flights.

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