On 19th March 2019, Consul General Zheng Xiyuan was invited to attend and address the Inauguration Ceremony for the Northern English Lake District China Forum. Consul Lyu Xiaomei accompanied him.
In his speech, Consul General Zheng pointed out that as the largest National Park in England, the Lake District has beautiful natural scenery and profound cultural heritage. It was inscribed in the World Heritage List last year by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee. The Daffodils by Wordsworth, the famous Lake Poet, lends to the appeal of the Lake District among Chinese tourists. In 2018, the number of Chinese outbound tourists reached 140 million, among whom merely 500,000 came to the UK, which indicates great potential to grow. Since the launch of the direct flight from Beijing to Manchester in 2016, there has been more and more Chinese tourists visiting Northern England. It is hoped that the Northern English Lake District China Forum will exploit the advantage of the great number of Chinese overseas students and Chinese communities in Northern England to further expand the popularity of the Lake District in the Chinese tourism market through various forms of heritage exchange. The Consulate General is willing to build links and bridges to promote exchange and cooperation between the Lake District and China, and make more contribution to enhancing friendship between the two peoples.
Northern English Lake District China Forum is a tourism promotion platform jointly set up by local councils in the Lake District under the guidance of Marketing Manchester for Chinese tourism market. It currently has 25 members and aims at designing promotional activities, which focus on the beautiful scenery, rich outdoor experience and history and culture of the Lake District, to establish cooperation with Chinese tourism platforms to attract more Chinese tourists.
Consul General Zheng also accepted interviews by the media including ITV Border during the function.