Macau’s tourism industry ended 2023 on a high, setting a new post-pandemic record of 175,030 daily visitors on New Year’s Eve, according to provisional data from the Macau Government Tourism Office (MGTO).
The city welcomed about 28.23 million visitors in full-year 2023, a daily average of circa 77,000, said the tourism office in a Monday press release. The figure represented a recovery to about 70 percent compared to 2019, the last trading year before the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic in early 2020.
“With the full reopening of the borders in 2023, the number of visitors to Macau maintained an upward trend, with the tourist industry showing good recovery and growth prospects, showcasing the attractiveness of Macau as a global tourism and leisure centre,” stated the MGTO.
The tourism office also said it would continue “to optimise tourist products and services” in 2024, in order “to actively explore international visitor markets”.
In terms of international visitor arrivals in 2023, “the recovery has also been significant,” said the tourism office.
According to the preliminary data, the recovery in the daily monthly average of the number of international visitors – compared to 2019 – increased from 10.1 percent in January to 94.4 percent in December 2023.
Between December 26 and December 30, the daily average of international visitors exceeded 10,000 for five consecutive days, said the tourism office.
The Macau government has a stated policy aim of encouraging its casino concessionaires to draw more of their customers from markets beyond China.
As part of the Macau government’s tender process for new 10-year gaming concessions, bidders were asked to create plans and pledge investment on a number of issues, including bringing in more customers from overseas.
Macau welcomed more than 399,180 visitors in the three-day New Year holiday period from December 30 to January 1 inclusive, according to official data. Preliminary figures from the city’s Public Security Police indicate that the average daily number of visitor arrivals during the holiday period was close to 133,060.
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President and chief executive of Light & Wonder