CHINA - Legislators from Wuxi, a center of traditional culture in Jiangsu province, aim to boost traditional and local culture through innovations of their own.
The move comes with the Yangtze River Delta region awash in the latest wave of Western and modern culture - a multibillion-dollar investment in an entertainment complex by Dalian Wanda Group, for example, and Shanghai Disneyland set to open in 2015.
Wuxi puts new spin on cultural traditions
"The survival of traditional Chinese culture relies on innovation, but we Chinese have not done enough in this regard," said Wu Guoping, chairman of Wuxi Lingshan Cultural Tourism Co and a deputy to the National People's Congress.
"Both the panda and kung fu come from China, but it was Hollywood that created the popular animated film Kung Fu Panda," Wu said. "This phenomenon is worthy of our reflection."
His comments come as Wuxi's government continues its efforts to boost tourism in a city that counts itself among the birthplaces of China's modern industry and commerce.
The key for traditional cultural tourism's success is to make it appeal to ordinary people, "the increasingly picky ones", Wu said.
Over the past two decades, Wu's company has transformed a barren hill into the Lingshan Buddhist scenic area, which draws about 3 million visitors annually.