Wu Poh-hsiung, honorary chairman of Taiwan's Kuomintang (KMT) Party, Saturday said the number of Chinese mainland tourists traveling to Taiwan will be as high as 1.5 million in 2010.
"This year, the number of tourists from the mainland is expected to hit 1.2 to 1.5 million," Wu said during his speech addressing the sixth Cross-Strait Economic, Trade and Culture Forum held in Guangzhou this weekend.
In late June, the mainland's Taiwan affairs chief Wang Yi said the figure was expected to hit 1 million in 2010 after the January-May figure shot up 90 percent compared with the same period last year.
According to Wang, head of the State Council's Taiwan Affairs Office,about 666,000 mainlanders traveled to Taiwan in the first five months of 2010 while 1.96 million Taiwanese residents visited the Chinese mainland.
Mainland tourists have become increasingly interested in visiting farms, streets, residential communities, factories and schools when they are in Taiwan, Wang said, adding that the grass-roots-level exchanges have brought people from across the Strait even closer.
Taiwan agreed to allow residents from the mainland to tour the island in July 2008.