China-US Tourism Year starts
This year's New Year's Eve festivities in Times Square in New York were as spectacular as ever. But this time round the event was even more highly anticipated as it signalled the start of the China-US Tourism Year.
Chinese Ambassador to the US, Cui Tiankai said the event would strengthen the China-US ties.
"The China-US tourism year will play a positive role in deepening mutual understanding and friendship between the peoples from the two countries. We welcome more US people visiting China, and we encourage more Chinese people to visit the US. I wish people-to-people exchanges can strengthen the ties," he said.
The Tourism Year was agreed by Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Barack Obama back in September, during Xi's state visit to the US. The event featured in the New year's celebrations in Times Square.
In the dazzling performances leading up to the ball drop at midnight, was a Chinese cultural dance, presented by the Sino-American Friendship Association. Combining the traditional Chinese ribbon, Dunhuang and Yi dances, the performance displayed cultures from ancient to modern, and from the North to South China.