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Tourist numbers fall in China's Olympic year

01 July 2008 by

The amount of tourists visiting the Chinese capital of Beijing has fallen in the country's Olympic year.

According to a report on the BBC News website the number of tourists visiting the Chinese capital in May was 14% lower than the same period of 2007.

Officials had expected the Olympics to attract more visitors, but visa requirements and over-zealous security officials have led to a fall in tourist demand.

Businessmen say it has become harder to travel into China, and many long-term foreign residents in Beijing have had difficulties renewing their visas.

A number of new hotels have been built for the Olympic Games and others refurbished but many say business is slow.

A few weeks ago, China issued a "legal guide" for foreigners arriving in China for the Olympics that contained a list of dos and don'ts, including a ban on sleeping outside, displaying "insulting slogans or banners".

BBC Olympics article in full>>

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Beijing Olympic Games website>>

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By Gemma Sharkey

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