Due to its massive population, China's tourism market is not overly reliant on the arrival offoreign tourists. Although international visitors will come to the country in increasing numbers in thecoming years, it is the rapidly rising domestic middle class that is fuelling expansion in China's tourismmarket. China's new tourism culture places a high value on luxury and the ability to display status and israpidly increasing the space for mid- and high-end tourism offerings in the country. Many internationalhospitality operators are establishing themselves in the country and investing huge sums, although in manycases they operate with local partners. Given the high ratio of domestic to international tourists, the marketis driven by Chinese tastes and international operators will struggle if they do not seek the help of anexperienced local partner. China is also one of the largest providers of international tourists to othermarkets and Chinese tourists are prized for their willingness to spend while travelling. As this trendcontinues, we will see increasing convergence of standards in quality and luxury between China and otherinternational destinations, which has already happened in China's major cities and is beginning to reachinto the second and third tier cities in the country's interior.