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Upcoming Olympics helps boost Beijing's tourist numbers by 12.6%

Updated:2007-10-27 From:Xinhuanet

BEIJING, Oct. 26 (Xinhua) -- The number of overseas visitors to Beijing reached 3.2 million in the first nine months of this year, up 12.6 percent from a year earlier, local authorities said on Friday.

The figure breaks down into 2.8 million foreign tourists, up 14percent, and 400,000 tourists from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, up4.1 percent, the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Statistics said in a statement.

The United States, Japan, the Republic of Korea remain the three largest sources of overseas tourists to Beijing, with the number standing at 444,000, 435,000 and 341,000 respectively, up 19.4 percent, 22 percent and seven percent, the bureau said.

"Olympic factors", such as the Good Luck Beijing Sports Events, have mainly boosted the tourism growth, it said.

More visitors are expected to come to Beijing next year, when the 29th Olympic Games are held.

During the Games next year, China will host 280,000 athletes, referees, journalists and other workers from more than 200 countries and regions, according to the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2008 Olympic Games (BOCOG).

About five million overseas tourists and more than 120 million domestic travelers will visit Beijing in 2008 and seven million spectators will watch the games at the venues, according to official statistics.

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