Only way is up for China's high achievers

ESTHER HAN
Last updated 11:12 15/07/2013
Bridge_Landscape
Dean Sewell

PERFECTLY EXCLUSIVE: The Sydney Harbour Bridge has been booked out for four days by The Perfect China company.

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A Chinese health company has rewarded 3000 of its best sales staff with a trip to Sydney, boosting NSW's Chinese tourist numbers already at record levels.

Since Saturday, BridgeClimb has been working on ''super capacity mode'' to fulfil its biggest ever single corporate booking, dispatching groups of 40 every 15 minutes over the arch.

The Perfect China company arranged exclusive use of the bridge for four days to reward its highest-performing employees.

Perfect China's Sydney convention is the latest in a series of large-scale Chinese corporate incentive events secured by Business Events Sydney, partnered with Destinations NSW.

 The one booking alone is expected to inject A$21 million ($21 million) into the state's economy.

The number of Chinese visitors attending conferences or conventions jumped by 70 per cent to 16,120 within the past four years, Tourism Research Australia said.

Overall Chinese business traveller numbers rose 5 per cent each year in the same period.

Tourism officials are thrilled about the growth, as overseas business visitors tend to splurge six times more on food, souvenirs and experiences compared to other tourists. Two-thirds also report they will return to Australia within five years for a holiday.

Chinese people are the highest spending tourists, at about A$4.5 billion ($5.24 billion) a year or A$7000 ($8144) each.

Destination NSW's chief executive, Sandra Chipchase, said the influx of Chinese business tourists bolstered its efforts to double the value of inbound tourism from China. "In the year ending March, more than 383,500 Chinese people came to our state, spending over A$1.3 billion ($1.5 billion)," Chipchase said.

The business development manager at Business Events Sydney, Kristian Nicholls, said 11 Chinese corporate incentive events had been arranged in the past year, up from nine the year before.

"The increase is in line with the growing middle class in China. We are also relatively close, in the same time zone.''

The Perfect China delegates fly home on Wednesday.

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- Sydney Morning Herald

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