Tue, 12 Dec 2023

MACAU CITY, Macau: Over the Lunar New Year holiday, Macau, the world's largest gambling hub, witnessed a resurgence of tourists from mainland China, after ending all COVID-19 testing requirements for inbound travelers from the mainland, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

In a statement released this week, Macau's government said that the special administrative region welcomed more than 71,000 visitors on January 23, the highest single day count since the pandemic.

The government said that over the first three days of the Lunar New Year, from 21st to 23rd January, more than 94 percent of visitors to Macau came from mainland China and neighboring special administrative region Hong Kong.

Average daily visitor arrivals reached more than 51,000, a year-on-year rise of 217 percent, it added.

After hosting few tourists since the start of the pandemic, the surge comes after Beijing, in January, reopened its international borders for the first time in three years.

Macau, a former Portuguese colony, had only 15,000 average daily visits in 2022.

Executives said that many hotel resorts on Macau's gambling strip have seen guest rooms sold out for the holiday period, while local residents said they hoped that the rise in visitors would boost the city's struggling economy.

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