LOS ANGELES, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) -- The western U.S. city of Los Angeles received a record 1.2 million visitors from China in 2018, the authorities said on Wednesday.

The city had 50 million visitors in 2018, up by 3.1 percent year-on-year to reach a record high, said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Tourism & Convention Board President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. in downtown Los Angeles.

And the figure marked the eighth consecutive year of tourism growth in Los Angeles.

New tourism records were set for both domestic and international visits with the city hosting an estimated 42.5 million domestic visitors and 7.5 million international visitors, respectively.

"Los Angeles is a place where everyone is welcome, and tourism strengthens our diversity, grows our economy, and supports good-paying jobs for families across our city," said Garcetti.

"Surpassing 50 million annual visitors two years ahead of schedule is the latest milestone in our ongoing work to bring Los Angeles to the world, and the world to Los Angeles," he added.

Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board has worked hard "to get a bigger footprint in China to merchandise to our friends," said Wooden.

"I'm proud to say that we were very happy we made the decision to go to China 13 years ago and open up our first office in Beijing," he said.

The organization now has four offices in the Chinese mainland and will probably open another office soon, Wooden said.