Destinations

Birmo hits back at China’s “unhelpful” travel warning against Australia

Federal Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Simon Birmingham has labelled China’s travel warning against visiting Australia as “unhelpful”, rejecting the idea Australia is unsafe for tourists.

Speaking to the ABC’s Radio National yesterday, Birmingham said that he accepted Asian-Australians had faced incidents of racism since the COVID-19 crisis began.

However, he said the idea being pushed by China that Australia is an unsafe destination for visitors “does not stand up to scrutiny”.

It comes after the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism issued an alert warning against travelling to Australia, claiming a “significant increase” in racist attacks on “Chinese and Asian people”.

It also follows the imposition of tariffs on Australian barley last month by China and banned imports from four abattoirs, reportedly representing 35 per cent of Australia’s Chinese beef exports.

“Australia’s a country where our leaders and our communities condemn racism and where we have very clear processes in place if violent attacks occur for people to report them,” Minister Birmingham told Radio National.

“But I think the idea that Australia, in any way, is an unsafe destination for visitors to come to is one that just does not stand up to scrutiny.”

Asked by Radio National’s Fran Kelly whether he believed China was attempting to do diplomatic damage to Australia with the travel warning, Minister Birmingham said it was unclear.

“It’s difficult for me to try to ascribe motivations to other countries; this is an unhelpful statement, no doubt about that,” he said.

Chinese nationals represent the largest inbound market for visitor arrivals to Australia behind New Zealand, with some 1.4 million Chinese short-term visitors arriving in Australia in 2019.

While the Morrison government has unequivocally dismissed Beijing’s travel warning, anecdotal evidence disclosed to ABC News has shown there has been a spike in racist attacks toward people of East Asian appearance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, foreigners in China have also reported a spike in xenophobia during the coronavirus pandemic, according to the public broadcaster.

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

Cruise

CLIA creates new avenue for agents to lobby politicians on Australia’s cruise restart

Have your numerous attempts to highlight the plight of cruising to your local MP fallen on deaf ears? Help has arrived.

Share

CommentComments

Midweek Interview

Life in the time of COVID-19 with Cunard’s Katrina McAlpine

Cunard’s commercial director had plenty to share during her catch-up with Travel Weekly, including how she once saw a koala walk out of a bar.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

British Airways staff (not actors) front airline’s first ad campaign since 2019

Got a minute to spare? Grab a cuppa and watch British Airways’ snazzy new ad starring the airline’s very own colleagues.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Health Minister says international travel “an incentive” for Aussies to get vaccinated

Got a few clients who desperately want to venture overseas, but aren’t keen on getting the jab? We highly recommend sharing this article with them.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Federal Budget “unlikely” to deliver major benefits for agents: AFTA

Were you counting on a big cash splash from the government this Federal Budget? Well, AFTA has warned not to get too excited ahead of tonight’s big reveal.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Princess Cruises restructures local sales team

Does your Princess Cruises BDM suddenly happen to have a new name and hairdo? Free yourself of confusion with this update.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

New flight tracking tech sheds fresh light on MH370 mystery

New research suggests the pilot of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 made a series of turns to escape detection before plunging the plane into the Indian Ocean.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Tourist narrowly avoids death after glass-bottomed bridge shatters

What do you get when a 100-metre-high glass suspension bridge is hit with gale-force winds? This terrifying incident.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

The Star lobs merger offer at rival Crown to create $12bn tourism and entertainment giant

by Huntley Mitchell

The Star faces some competition, however, from a private equity firm that wants to take over Crown (which, FYI, has also just hired a new CEO).

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Borders to stay shut until at least 2022, says Treasurer

Meanwhile, ScoMo reckons Australians don’t have the “appetite” for international travel. What an absolute load of bollocks.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

New Zealand welcomes back travellers from NSW following 48-hour pause

After being left in limbo for two days, NSW travellers have been given the green light from New Zealand to grab their suitcase and head to the airport.

Share

CommentComments

Events

Registrations open for Travel DAZE 2021!

Get excited, people! Travel DAZE is back for another year to help foster the reboot of travel and tourism.

Share

CommentComments