VANCOUVER - Premier Christy Clark has announced the creation of a Crown corporation called Destination BC to promote tourism in the province.

She says the aim is to increase tourism revenue to $18 billion a year by 2016, a $4.7-billion jump from current numbers.

The establishment of the new agency move follows a decision by the Liberal government just six months before the 2010 Olympics to scrap Tourism BC, which was also an industry-led, government-funded marketing body.

Clark says the new corporation will be accountable to taxpayers and more responsive to the tourism industry, which she says has been helping with plans to market the province to the world, especially the growing middle class in China and India.

She says B.C. has been holding its own in tourism visitors despite the global economic crisis and more tourists mean more jobs in the province.

Last week, NDP Leader Adrian Dix seemed to upstage today's announcement by saying he would re-establish Tourism BC if his party wins the election next May.

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