Decrease in Chinese Visitors Hitting Tourist Areas in Japan

Politics

Tokyo, Feb. 26 (Jiji Press)--The impacts of the outbreak of the new coronavirus originating in China are starting to increase in tourist areas in Japan that depend mainly on Chinese visitors.

A hotel in Aichi Prefecture, central Japan, suspended operations earlier this month after being hit by a number of cancellations of reservations from Chinese group tourists, according to credit agency Tokyo Shoko Research Ltd.

Prefectures relying heavily on tourists from China, such as Shizuoka, which borders Aichi, and Nara, in western Japan, as well as Aichi, may suffer a blow if the viral outbreak continues, industry sources said.

In 2018, Chinese accounted for 64.6 pct of all foreign travelers staying overnight or longer in Shizuoka, 54.9 pct in Nara and 49.3 pct in Aichi, far above the nationwide average of 26.5 pct, according to a survey by the Japan Tourism Agency. The figure was also high in Yamanashi Prefecture, central Japan, and the eastern prefecture of Chiba, standing around 40 pct.

The number of flights linking Shizuoka Airport and China, which had stood at some 30 a week, has now fallen to zero. As of Feb. 13, the number of flights between Chubu Centrair International Airport in Aichi and China was down by 60 pct from the level on Jan. 1 this year.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press