— This is the script of CNBC's news report for China's CCTV on May 19, Tuesday.
Welcome to CNBC Business Daily, I'm Qian Chen.
While gateway US cities and states already have big campaigns to attract Chinese tourists, the United States' official tourism bureau wants Chinese travelers to visit more than just major cities.
Chinese tourists spend on average $6,000 each per trip to the US, the highest of any country, and Brand USA wants to keep that number growing.
And the biggest priority for Brand USA - the country's first-ever nationally coordinated tourism marketing effort created to implement the strategy - is China.
[Chris Thompson, CEO of Brand USA] "We see China as a tremendous market for potential visitors to the United States. You are exactly right, 2.2 million visitors from China last year, that was up 21% over the year prior. We know there's over 100 million Chinese that travel outside the borders, yet only 6% of Chinese have passports, and we only get about 2% outbound travel, but we are the No.1 long-bound markets."
Over 2 million Chinese visitors came to the US in 2014, and the Department of Commerce estimates that over 7 million will come by 2021. The State Department has also seen a marked increase - 56 percent - in Chinese applications for US visas since the announcement of visa validity extensions late last year, according to Thompson.
Every destination that Brand USA partners with can use the Brand USA digital platform - GoUSA.com - to create a micro site, and bigger brands, like those of New York or California, have their own separate destination websites.
Brand USA also helps produce small "in-language video" vignettes that help destinations promote themselves in Chinese.
One theme that Brand USA will be focusing on for the current fiscal year is the great outdoors, with the National Park Service celebrating its 100th anniversary next year. Brand USA is producing a film about the country's national parks that will be previewed in the fall and then shown in its entirety early next year.
[Chris Thompson, CEO of Brand USA] "Some of the iconic things that represent the United States are national parks. Next year, 2016, is the 100 anniversary of national parks. So our interior department along with Brand USA are holding our parks pied. We are producing an IMAX film, a big screen film that will tell all about the United States to the filters around national parks, so we think that would be a great interest to the Chinese."
Since the US announced plans to extend the length of Chinese tourist, student, and business visas last November, leading American travel destinations have kept a close eye on Chinese tourist arrivals to evaluate the near- and long-term impact of this historic move.
But it is China that is seen as having central importance to California tourism growth in 2015.
According to Brand USA, the number of Chinese tourists visiting the US will more than double in the next five years, surpassing 4 million visits. Recent research by VisitCalifornia and PhocusWright found that 60 percent of Chinese respondents listed the United States on their destination wish list - more than any other country.
As VisitCalifornia looks for new ways to boost international marketing efforts, the organization is adapting five key trends - culinary, family, outdoor, luxury, and entertainment - to each of its key markets this year.
5) Chinese Tourism to the US Will Outpace Europe and Other Destinations.
4) Chinese Investment in the United States Will Gain Pace.
3) 2015 Will Be the Year of Mobile Innovation for Chinese Tourism.
2) WeChat Will Extend its Reach Outside of China, In Line With Chinese Tourism Destinations and Trends.
1) 2015 Will Be the Year of the Individual Chinese Tourist.
CNBC's Qian Chen, reporting from Singapore.
SOTs on China-Latin America relations --
[Don Hanna, Asia Managing Director, Hanna-Roubini Global Economics] "Certainly, the best thing that the Chinese could do is to help Dilma, Brazil and Latin America is to grow their economy quicker and import more." 08:35:46
"Interestingly, this trip's got a different set of countries to be visited. Brazil obviously is their major source of both exports and imports into China, but rather than seeing Venezuela and Argentina, or Bolivia where they have more leftist-leading government of Latin America, this trip is along Pacific coast with countries that are intended to be much more liberal. So you are seeing Columbia and Chile as well as Peru, in addition to Brazil. Those are places in which, the typical standard, which has been "let's buy resources and let's try and provide some solid areas to governments that don't have access to markets or to political supports elsewhere" is not the issue. That's actually an interesting change."
"One of the big issues that the Chinese economy faces is oversupply. Particularly in industries related to investments. What you have seen is this push to infrastructure, rather than purchasing resources because at the moment if Chinese economy is going to grow more slowly, it's gonna need less investment, but it still needs to have demand for those industries that have been created in the past and resulted in that investment, and that's where infrascuture spending in Latin America can come in, and that's part of the reason that they want to go talk both to Brazil and the Pacific coast, because the idea is to build a railroad that would allow for cheaper products export from Brazil or the Eastern side of Latin America across the Pacific by going to the Andes."
[Jorge Mariscal, Regional CIO, EM, UBS] "First of all, the size of the potential deal is much bigger. Brazil is an almost 2 trillion dollar economy, with 300 million people. So the deal here is very meaningful. Also, the Chinese premier arrives at a time when Brazil is in need of FDI from outside, investment domestically, they are trying to turn around their economy that's probably going to register a recession this year, so this is timely. Timely for Brazilians."
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