World Bridge Tourism is a project supported by the European Union, in order to increase the flows of visitors from China to the EU. World Bridge Tourism Shanghai will be held in conjunction with ITB China on the 9th-10th May 2017. The programme combines a conference and a B2B workshop between tourism-related EU companies (particularly SMEs) and Chinese operators. The project will be supported by an extensive programme of research and webinars aimed at increasing the understanding of the needs of Chinese visitors within the European tourism community. World Bridge Tourism Shanghai will be the curtain raiser for a major initiative that will take place the following year: the 2018 EU–China Tourism Year. During that year an unprecedented level of attention will be paid to the growing importance of China as an origin market, and the changing preferences and behaviour patterns of Chinese visitors.