Chinese island to embrace ‘medical tourism’
China holidays may often be selected for their sightseeing, adventure or city hopping benefits but they are increasingly being chosen for their medicinal value with Hainan Province – China’s southernmost island setting up a specific zone to formalise policies surrounding ‘medical tourism’ and its apparent growth.
Officially titled the Boao Lecheng International Medical Travel Zone, this sector will operate out of the town of Boao’s outskirts and this particular location is familiar with policy making directives in the past, having hosted the annual Boao Forum for Asia since 2001.
So-called ‘medical tourism’ has taken off in fellow Asian nations such as India and Singapore and travellers such inclined visit these countries with a heavy focus placed upon leisure-based activities, health care and self well-being which in their eyes, proves the ultimate getaway.
What the zone means for medicinal practice is that international institutions can set up business within Boao Lechang International Medical Travel Zone receiving no limitations while importing medical instruments at lower tax rates.
Governor of Hainan, Jiang Dingzhi explained that “It is the only travel zone of its kind in the country and I am confident that it will be a success.”
According to the provincial statistic bureau, Hainan enjoyed a substantial number of arrivals last year with 33 million visitors flocking to the island helping to contribute 37.9 billion yuan to the economy.
With plans in place to embrace a wave of medical tourism on top of this figure, Hainan province will be hoping that the zone will be fully operational in the two to three years that are being anticipated for its delivery.