China's major port cities saw a growing number of inbound and outbound cruise ships in 2016, totaling 1,040, according to the China Cruise and Yacht Industry Association.
In 2016, the number of outbound Chinese cruise passengers topped 2 million for the first time, and is expected to reach 2.6 million this year, said the association.
Experts forecast Chinese people will make 3.5 million cruise trips annually by the year 2020, becoming the most dynamic cruise market in the Asia-Pacific region.
China has become the world's eighth-biggest cruise market. There were 18 cruise ships operating in China's major port cities as of 2016, a jump from just one ship in 2006, when China started vigorously developing its cruise industry.
"China's cruise market has huge development potential," said Li Qinggang, director of Tianjin Dongjiang Maritime Safety Administration.
Tianjin international cruise home port, the largest in Asia, received 138 voyages in 2016 and is expected to receive 150 in 2017.
(Xinhua News Agency May 18, 2017)