‘Red tourism’ also rises as China celebrates national birthday – China’s latest top news


Jeremy Goldkorn’s selection of the top stories from China on October 4, 2017. Part of the daily SupChina newsletter, a convenient package of China’s business, political, and cultural news delivered to your inbox for free. Subscribe here.

Tourism in red and any other shade you like

It’s the weeklong National Day holiday in China and news is slow. The People’s Daily’s top story (in Chinese) for October 4 is “Airline routes swiftly increasing, air fares are going down — China’s airlines take you flying to poetic distant lands.” The article notes a few numbers:

  • Chinese airlines now operate 3,794 routes, reaching 3,055 of the country’s cities, and 739 destinations abroad.
  • 488 million Chinese people took flights in 2016.
  • “Cabbage prices” (白菜价 báicài jià), air tickets that don’t cost much more than a cabbage, are becoming more common: The article mentions trips that cost under 100 yuan ($15).

On SupChina today, we also look at Chinese discussions of “red tourism” — visits to sites that played important roles in the history of the Communist Party.

Geoengineering on a massive scale

Beijing and other northern cities are starting to enjoy the H2O from the decades-in-the-making South-North Water Transfer Project: Reuters reports that the authorities say that 10 billion cubic meters (353 billion cubic feet) of fresh water have been moved from the country’s south to arid north “in the few years”  since the project “came onstream.”

Reuters does not say exactly when the project first began transporting water; there has been little official information about the project, possibly because of the discontent of those who were forced to relocate to make way for canals. According to the article, “China aims to ultimately supply 44.8 billion cubic meters annually to the north via the ambitious water diversion project.”