Chinese gov’t reviews new multi-entry visa proposal for Macau-Hengqin

Jenny Ortiz 2 months ago
Chinese gov’t reviews new multi-entry visa proposal for Macau-Hengqin

The Chinese government is studying the introduction of a specialized visa category tailored for Chinese tour groups, facilitating multi-entry access between Macau and Hengqin within a designated timeframe. This initiative seeks to simplify the accommodation process for tour group visitors, allowing them to explore Macau while lodging in Hengqin hotels.  

Huang Zhongjian, deputy director of Hengqin’s Economic Development Bureau, revealed state ministries and commissions conducted a study in Hengqin in March, presenting initial findings for further consideration. 

This development follows the formalization of special customs operations on March 1st in the Guangdong-Macao In-depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin, jointly managed by the Guangdong Provincial Government and the Macau SAR Government.  

Pending decision  

The final verdict on this proposal is anticipated to be announced imminently by the Chinese Central Government. Emphasizing the significance of incorporating Macau’s industry perspectives, officials underscored the need to address various logistical considerations, including customs clearance facilities, hotel market demand, and tourist preferences, while making requisite arrangements in Customs and Immigration.  

Macau’s initiative  

The proposal originated from the Macau government earlier this year, with the primary objective of prolonging tourists’ stays in Macau, particularly amidst concerns over exorbitant hotel expenses. The move aims to bolster tourism by catering to the evolving preferences of travellers and enhancing accessibility between Macau and Hengqin.  

Macau’s gaming revenue up in March  

Last March, Macau recorded a significant resurgence in its gross gaming revenue (GGR) amounting to MOP19.50 billion (€2.24 billion), marking a remarkable 49-month high. The uptick represents a 5.5 percent increase from February’s figures of MOP18.5 billion (€2.12 billion).  

Surge in tourist arrivals  

Based on government data, tourist arrivals via tour groups saw a staggering 1,569 percent year-on-year increase to 278,000 visitors recorded in the first two months of this year. Notably, Macau welcomed 144,000 tour group visitors in February alone, signalling a significant uptick in tourist activity.  

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