The Eighth China Xinjiang International Tourism Festival has raised its curtains in Shihezi City to once again attract a global audience with its picturesque scenery and grand military feats. The tourism promotion conference was held yesterday at Shihezi University, featuring a detailed introduction to the festival as well as a contract signing ceremony.
Num Neselting, the director of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Tourist Bureau, described Xinjiang's grand beauty and immense cultural history. Renowned for its longstanding traditions of singing, dancing, fruit plates and golden fields, Xinjiang has long fascinated visitors from both China and overseas, he said. With its vast ranges of land, mountains and rivers, the area of Xinjiang covers one sixth of China. Countless historical sites along the ancient Silk Road and multicultural customs make Xinjiang a world class tourist destination.
Wang Yuke, the director of Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC) Tourism Bureau, presented the audience with some background on XPCC. The special army, consisting of more than 2,500,000 people, not getting paid, never shifting and never retiring, takes on the duties of guarding and transforming the western region's borders and fully dedicates itself to tackling the hurdles of the rough environment. The army has been solely responsible for performing many miracles over the past half century, he said.
Wang Pinghai, mayor of Shihezi City, gave detailed information about the city’s tourist attractions. Dubbed "a bright pearl embed in the Gobi desert", young and vibrant Shihezi is famous for its army land recuperation. The city has been sited, designed and constructed by the army. During all those years, soldiers have been committed to continuing with this cause, with even their offspring carrying on the work, he said. Trough its arduous efforts, the army has managed to build a fashionable and modern city on the formerly desert wasteland. Wang emphasized that the spirit and culture that have gone into this small miracle would certainly capture the tourists' appreciation and admiration.
The promotion conference ended with a contract signing ceremony. All attending international guests and local officials then raised their glasses in a toast to the success of their cooperation plans and the prosperity of Xinjiang tourism.