Macau’s 2023 tourist-arrival tally is likely to be “over 27 million”, said the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) in a Wednesday email in response to a GGRAsia enquiry.
That would be circa 8 percent higher than a 25-million figure mentioned by MGTO director Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, in remarks to local public broadcaster TDM in early October.
The upped number – if achieved – would represent circa 69 percent of the pre-pandemic 2019 tally. That year Macau recorded a total of 39.4 million visitor arrivals, according to data from the city’s Statistics and Census Service.
Macau may see in 2024 visitor-arrival volume recover to “80 percent or more” of 2019′s, said the city’s Secretary for Economy and Finance, Lei Wai Nong, in remarks to the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday. It was amid discussion of the government’s Policy Address outlining its work for next year.
During the session, Mr Lei reiterated commentary earlier this month on the tourism sector, and the government’s tourism-promotion focus for 2024. This included pursuing visitor source markets in “Northeast Asia and Southeast Asia”, with planned discount offers on flights and hotel stays for travellers from those places, as well as an expansion of direct-flight routes.
In the emailed remarks to GGRAsia, the tourism bureau said it expected “2 million” visitor arrivals from overseas markets in 2024, i.e., from places outside mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Macau’s six casino operating companies have been asked to assist with expansion of the volume of overseas visitors as part of their current 10-year concessions.
Visitor arrivals from overseas source markets amounted to circa 1.02 million for the first 10 months of this year, only about 39 percent of the same period recorded in 2019.
Macau had nearly 22.69 million visitor arrivals overall for the calendar year to October 31, show government data. The two top source markets remained mainland China (15.32 million) and Hong Kong (5.95 million), representing 64.4 percent and 97 percent, respectively, of the same period in 2019.
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