​New development philosophy to lead the way for ice and snow industry

China.org.cn, 02 16, 2022
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During the Spring Festival holiday this year, which coincided with the opening of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, Jilin's ice and snow tourism sector saw a big boost.


Statistics from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism showed that Jilin received 9.34 million domestic tourists during the holiday, an increase of 13.9 percent year on year, with holiday revenue rising 12.4 percent from last year to 8.39 billion yuan.  


Many skiing enthusiasts went to ski in Jilin from across China, with Beidahu Ski Resort leading in popularity. The ski areas of the Vanke Songhua Lake Resort and the Changbai Mountain Wanda International Resort saw their visitors increase by 72 percent and 351 percent respectively year on year.


Abundant ice and snow resources


Ice and snow are valuable natural, ecological and development resources for Jilin, and the province, which used to be an industrial base of China, has decided to develop an ice and snow economy as one of the endeavors to drive its rejuvenation.  


"We must promote the overall planning of ice and snow resources in both Jilin and other provinces, as well as overall planning of ice and snow tourism, summer tourism, leisure tourism, and ecological tourism," said Jing Junhai, secretary of the CPC Jilin Provincial Committee.


Jing also stressed that Jilin must follow the new development philosophy in the expansion of the ice and snow industry, and develop a trillion-yuan ice and snow economy by fully tapping into its abundant ice and snow resources.


Now, the ice and snow economy is gathering momentum all around Jilin as demonstrated by rising ice and snow tourism and consumption. An industrial landscape with east Jilin focusing on snow and west Jilin on ice has been formed. Besides, ice and snow tourist attractions are being linked as part of the efforts to develop integrated tourism.


In east and central Jilin province, the Changbai Mountain, Jilin city and Changchun city all boast abundant snow resources. Changbai Mountain, in particular, is one of the world's three best powder snow bases, and attracts a big crowd of skiers.


Based on the rich snow resources, Jilin has made continuous efforts to upgrade its facilities and scaled up the ice and snow industry, with 54 ski resorts having been built boasting a single-day reception of up to 100,000 visitors. The Vanke Songhua Lake Ski Resort, the ski area of the Changbai Mountain International Resort, and the Jilin Beidahu Ski Resort lead the country in terms of reception, and the Beishan Cross-country Ski Resort in Jilin city is China's only four-season ski facility. Besides, Jilin has spent 30 billion yuan to renovate the Tonghua Jinchang Ski Resort, the first professional ski competition venue of the Republic of China.


Ice and snow products, led by skiing, are also getting increasingly diverse, thus attracting a growing number of people to experience the charm of ice and snow.

Ice and snow tourism


In addition to skiing, Jilin also features other tourism and leisure activities.


For example, Baishan city, with Changbai Mountain and traditional culture as its trump card, received 197,100 tourists during the Spring Festival holiday, up 52.1 percent year on year, with a tourism revenue of 370 million yuan, up 386.8 percent over last year.


The Hantun village in Jilin city, with fascinating rime scenery, is also a big draw to tourists. Every year, a lot of people go there to watch the impressive natural wonder and at the same time have a distinctive Manchu hotpot.


In Changchun city, ice and snow tourism is more diverse. The Jingyuetan Tourist Area has the most ice and snow amusement facilities in Changchun, ranging from a ski resort, an ice and snow amusement park, a deer ground, to an ice fishing area. Lianhua Mountain Ski Resort, seizing the opportunities brought by the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, has opened a "new ice and snow world" for three consecutive years, which proved to be very popular among tourists. According to Ma Quan, who is in charge of ice and snow tourism at the Lianhua Mountain area, in addition to a ski resort and the "new ice and snow world", the area has also launched homestay services and run rural restaurants, which in turn have boosted sighting tours to neighboring vegetable growing facilities all year long.


In west Jilin province, ice tourism is booming, with Chagan Lake winter fishing being the biggest highlight. The Chagan Lake scenic area has received 138,500 tourists with a tourism revenue of 120 million yuan. Winter fishing has reached 1.75 million kg, up 10 percent year on year, with sales revenue expected to hit 35 million yuan.

Ice and snow industry


To engage more people in ice and snow sports, Jilin has stepped up ice and snow sports education, with 557 school with special ice and snow sports programs having been built. Among them, 302 are national-level ones and 15 feature programs about Olympic Games. Now Jilin has 10 million people taking part in ice and snow sports each year, with over 1.2 million of them being students.


Jilin also actively seeks cooperation to fully bring out the potential of the ice and snow economy.


It has signed a framework agreement for strategic cooperation with Xinjiang to build an experimental zone for promoting high-quality development of the ice and snow economy, based on the prime ice and snow resources on the Changbai Mountains and Altay Mountains.


In December 2021, the high-speed rail line linking Dunhua city and the Changbai Mountain opened to traffic, which made it easier for tourists from Changchun city, other northeast China cities and cities in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region to travel to Changbai Mountain on a high-speed train.


Meanwhile, Jilin is actively fostering new modern forms of business and development models, as represented by the "ice and snow plus leisure", "ice and snow plus culture", "ice and snow plus health", and "ice and snow plus training" cross-sector strategies. New types of tourism consumption are emerging such as tailored services.  


Many ice and snow tourism attractions like Changbai Mountain, Chagan Lake, Songhua Lake, Beidahu Lake, and Changchun New Ice and Snow World are becoming ideal destinations for tourists with comprehensive tourism services including dining, accommodation, transportation, tourism, shopping and entertainment.


Ice and snow events are also growing in number and influence, including the International Ice and Snow Industry Expo, the Jingyuetan Vasa International Ski Festival, the Chagan Lake Winter Fishing Festival, the Jilin Rime Festival and the Changbai Mountain Powder Snow Festival.  


According to Zhao Lanying, general manager of the Vanke Songhua Lake Resort, with a fancy ice and snow season program that combined skiing with cultural activities, the resort attracted nearly 8,000 tourists in two days with a revenue of six million yuan.


The Tianmao Ice and Snow Festival, an online shopping program jointly launched by leading e-commerce platform Tianmao and Vanke Songhua Lake Resort with an investment of 80 million yuan, has also facilitated new types of consumption and brought closer enterprises, venues and different localities.

Following two provincial guiding documents on ice and snow industry development, the Implementation Guidelines on Increasing the Scale and Strength of the Ice and Snow Industry and the Plan for Promoting High-quality Development of the Ice and Snow Industry (2021-2035), Jilin will continue to make efforts towards the goal of having a sizable ice and snow industry and a strong ice and snow tourism sector and becoming a world-class ice and snow tourism destination.