The new rules on transit visas for mainland Chinese passport holders will reduce abuses by half, the Macau police forecasts.
Wong Kim Hong, from the police’s immigration department, said that on average around 100 mainlanders per day are detected who were supposed to have used Macau en route to a third destination, but who actually just stayed in the city and then returned to mainland China.
Mainland tourists are suspected of using transit visas as a way to bypass the normal visa application procedures to enter Macau, which restrict the number of times each mainlander can visit the city.
Macau has reduced to five days, from seven, the permitted stay for mainland Chinese passport holders who transit in the city. The new rules will be effective from July 1, the police said on Monday.
Current Macau immigration rules allow mainland passport holders to stay in the territory up to seven days if they use Macau as a transit to other destinations.
Official figures show 2.64 million mainlanders entered Macau under a transit visa in 2013 but only 20.8 percent actually travelled to an overseas destination.
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"The MSAR [Macau Special Administrative Region] Government is always maintaining its policy not to have imported labour to work as dealers. This position has not changed"
Lionel Leong Vai Tac
Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance