CARSON CITY, Nev. — Lt. Gov. Mark Hutchison will lead a delegation of Nevada travel industry professionals on a trade mission to China April 5-15. China is an important market for Nevada and the United States, as it is one of the fastest-growing inbound travel markets to our country. The U.S. Travel Association (USTA) estimates 5.7 million Chinese visitors to the United States in 2021, which will make it the No. 1 overseas travel market in the United States. According to USTA, the average spending by Chinese visitors in 2015 was $7,201 per visit, more than visitors from any other country. “Nevada continues to safeguard its primary industry by promoting travel and tourism to the Silver State abroad during strategically planned sales missions,” Lt. Gov. Hutchison, chairman of the Nevada Commission on Tourism, said. “Nevada long has recognized the importance of the China market, and continues to build relationships that will benefit the Chinese traveler and the state of Nevada.” The current trade mission marks Nevada’s recommitment to the China market. In 2004, Nevada was the first state to be granted a license from the Chinese central government to open a tourism office, paving the way for business relationships that supported travel between the two countries. In 2016, Nevada secured representation in China through East West Marketing, reaffirming its commitment to this important market. The mission will begin with government-to-government meetings in Guangzhou and Hong Kong, followed by sales calls with top buyers and travel agents in Shanghai. The mission will conclude in Beijing with participation in the U.S. Consulate’s Tourism & Food Promotion contest launch. “Tourism is a pillar of Nevada’s economy — it is our state’s largest export industry,” Claudia Vecchio, director of the Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, said. “It is essential for Nevada to promote its tourism offerings in emerging markets such as China. This current sales mission allows Nevada tourism representatives to meet with China’s travel industry professionals and further develop the relationships necessary to continue bolstering travel to Nevada.” This latest outreach to the China market comes on the heels of the 2016 US-China Tourism Year, in which both countries sought to encourage travel and tourism between the United States and China; and the December 2016 inauguration of direct flights from Beijing to Las Vegas via Hainan Airlines. The Nevada Division of Tourism is a division of the Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs. More commonly known as TravelNevada, it is responsible for promoting and marketing Nevada as a travel destination to domestic and international travelers. Operating within a performance-based budget structure, TravelNevada is funded solely by a percentage of lodging tax paid by overnight guests throughout the state. For more, visit TravelNevada.biz.