Hong Kong looking at relaxing travel restrictions for mainland tourists
- Posted by Daniel Meesak
- On 30th October 2015
- china, hong kong, policy, regulations, restrictions, tourism, tourists
As the number of mainland tourists visiting Hong Kong has not only slowed down in recent years, but also decreased during the last months, Hong Kong is now looking at easing the travel restrictions for individual mainland tourists. Dai Bin, the president of China Tourism Academy says that the central government is willing to consider allow individual travellers from more mainland cities to visit Hong Kong as individual travellers. The individual visit scheme is currently limited to a fraction of China’s cities, with most mainland tourists to Hong Kong still visiting the Special Administrative Region in tour groups.
Dai also encourages people in Hong Kong to show more understanding for mainland visitors’ habits, arguing that parallel trading – buying goods in Hong Kong to resell them in mainland China – is a completely normal shopping norm.
However, some are arguing that it is unrealistic chasing continued growth in mainland tourist arrivals, citing societal concerns and concerns about tourist capacity in the 1,104km² region. At the same time, mainland tourism accounts for as much as 80% of all visitors to Hong Kong – and is crucial to the Hong Kong tourism industry.
Li Jinzao, chairman of the China National Tourism Administration, pins hopes on better connections through infrastructure such as the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge currently under construction, the high speed rail link between Hong Kong and the mainland city of Guangzhou, as well as further expansion of the Hong Kong international airport. “The central government will continue to support Hong Kong tourism”, Li reassures.
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Source: South China Morning Post