China has lifted a pandemic ban on group tours to several countries, including the United States and Australia, but tourists are still barred from group visits to Canada.
The change announced by China's culture and tourism ministry last week allows Chinese and online travel agencies to book group tours and packages for Chinese tourists in 70 more countries all over the world.
Canada was quietly left off the list.
The reason is related to Canada's recent focus on foreign interference, as first reported by CBC News.
In a statement to The Canadian Press about the snub, the Chinese embassy in Ottawa says that lately, Canada has repeatedly hyped up alleged interference by Beijing.
The embassy also points to what it describes as a rise in rampant and discriminatory anti-Asian acts and words.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 16, 2023.
Laura Osman, The Canadian Press