JERUSALEM, Oct. 30 (Xinhua) -- The Israeli Ministry of Tourism presented certificates on Monday to more than 40 Chinese tour leaders after a training course, the first of such kind launched by the ministry.
The move is a part of the Israeli ongoing activities to develop tourism products for Chinese tourists and encourage incoming tourism from China.
Amir Halevi, director general of the ministry, said at the certificate presentation ceremony that the course aims to solve the shortage of Chinese-speaking Israeli tour guides.
The Chinese tour leaders taking course are from China's travel agencies in cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu, which are focusing on cooperating with Israeli partners to attract more Chinese tourists to Israel.
The tour-leaders course, which includes 13 days of intense touring around the country and a 90-minute written test, introduced the Israeli tourism products, the ministry said.
The shortage of Chinese-speaking tour guide has threatened the quality of the tourism experience for Chinese tourists, it added.
China and Israel already have had a lot of cooperation in the sectors of economy, agriculture, high technology, science and tourism as well, said Halevi.
Direct flights from China to Israel will provide more convenience for the two countries for further cooperation, he added.
"We want to further collaborate with China and hopefully we can keep the wonderful relationship with China," he said.
Halevi believed that big achievements made in the last five years by the two countries would continue in the coming years.
In the first eight months of 2017, the number of Chinese tourists to Israel totaled 71,300, up 60 percent from a year ago, according to the statistics from the ministry.
Estimates put that the number of Chinese tourists to Israel would exceed 100,000 in 2017 and reach 200,000 within two to three years.