Hong Kong in tourism rut, as mainlanders look elsewhere (dpa German Press Agency)
Aug 21, 2015 UncategorizedComments Off on Hong Kong in tourism rut, as mainlanders look elsewhere (dpa German Press Agency)
Hong Kong (dpa) – Hong Kong saw an 8.4-per-cent drop in visitors in July from a year earlier, with other destinations in the region becoming more accessible to travellers from the mainland.
“The weakened Japanese yen has attracted a lot of Chinese tourists,” Gregory So, secretary of commerce and economic development, was quoted as saying by the South China Morning Post Friday.
Visitors from mainland China make up 77.7 per cent of total tourism in Hong Kong according to the Hong Kong Tourism Board.
Japan, South Korea and Taiwan have also relaxed visa requirements for Chinese citizens, make them “much easier to go to,” Joseph Tung Yao-chung, executive director of the Travel Industry Council, was quoted as saying.
Singapore has also been affected, with visitor numbers down year-on-year by 4.1 per cent in the first half.
Despite July’s drop, Hong Kong still recorded an overall 2.8 per cent increase for the first half of the year, compared with the same period a year earlier, So said.
In April China curbed multiple-entry permits issued to residents of the neighbouring city of Shenzhen, allowing only one visit per week to Hong Kong.
Pressure had grown over parallel traders, who buy in Hong Kong to sell back on the mainland, exploiting the exchange rate.