Chinese flights stopped despite tourism delegation to region


Howard Salkow

Senior Journalist

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DISAPPOINTED: Member for Cook Cynthia Lui is disappointed with the airline suspension. Image: Newsport.
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The member for Cook, Cynthia Lui, today expressed her disappointment that a leading Chinese airline had decided to halt flights into Far North Queensland.

Ms Lui was responding to China Southern Airlines revealing they would temporarily suspend direct flights between China's southern city Guangzhou and Cairns -- the main airport hub of the region -- citing a review of their international routes.

Direct flights to Cairns, which services visitors to the Great Barrier Reef and the world's oldest rain forest, will be paused from late April to October after which the future of the route is unclear.

“I’m disappointed to hear that China Southern Airlines have decided to suspend flights from Guangzhou to Cairns between April and September.

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“I’m advised Tourism and Events Queensland are negotiating with the airline to ensure the future of the route beyond September 2019,” said Ms Lui.

Meanwhile, Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones and Member for Cairns Michael Healy will today meet the first wave of more than 6000 Chinese tourists to Cairns over the next month.

The first of the delegates, attending the Amway China 2019 Leadership Seminar, have arrived as part of a month-long initiative set to pump $40 million into the Cairns economy.

“These people are the company’s best salespeople in China and qualified to travel to Cairns where they’ll spend time on the Great Barrier Reef, get a bird’s eye view of the world-heritage listed rainforest on Skyrail and experience the only place on earth where two ancient cultures meet,” said Minster Jones.

Ms Lui said Minister Jones is also in Cairns today hosting a Tourism Roundtable to discuss tourism strategy for FNQ with the local industry.

“We are investing $5.7 million on the Mowbray North section of the Wangetti Trail.

“On Monday three proponents were shortlisted to prepare detailed proposals for a Global Tourism Hub in Cairns.
“The Queensland Government is working with the tourism industry to continually improve our local tourism product so more visitors come to our region and create jobs,” said Ms Lui.

Last week, the State Government announced the $5.7 million project at the Mowbray North section of the Wangetti Trail, featuring a 2.25km mangrove experience boardwalk and 5km walking trail to Four Mile Beach.

The Wangetti Trail is a proposed iconic mountain bike and hiking trail in the coastal ranges between Palm Cove and Port Douglas.

The project is intended to be undertaken in two stages with the works on the Mowbray North portion to commence this year with the balance of the trail to be completed separately once further funding is secured.

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