Shops in scenic town back in business

Updated: 2013-04-13 01:33

By HE DAN in Beijing and WEN XINZHENG in Changsha (China Daily)

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Wang Hong, a lawyer in Changsha, capital of Hunan province, is also opposed to the new policy in her hometown.

"The old town is also a place where locals live. There are many private properties, so ownership (of the town) does not belong to the government — the streets there are public, too. Local residents have not empowered the government to enclose the town to sell entrance tickets.

"The admission fee will deter local residents from inviting friends and relatives who do not live in the old town from visiting their homes."

Wang said the government also failed to seek public opinion during the decision-making process.

However, Xiang Yang, who has worked for a local travel agency for more than 13 years, welcomed the new rule.

"In the past, I heard some tourists complain that they felt disappointed after visiting Fenghuang as there was not much to see here. Later, I realized that some illegal travel agencies charged tourists admission fees for scenic spots but simply skipped the spots that charge fees and took tourists to free ones," she said, adding that she believed the new rule will help combat such practices.

She also said the additional revenue will help motivate the government to invest in maintenance of the old town.

Cai stressed that the new rule is introduced to regulate the tourism market, and will help to protect the old town and benefit local business in the long run.

"We will not abandon the new policy but we will make some changes to the guidelines for implementing the rule," he said without elaborating.