Visitor arrivals to Macau exceeded 28 million last year MGTO set up working team to initiate plans in three tiers
Over 400 travel industry representatives and media attended MGTO’ Annual Press Conference
MGTO introduces the development plans and promotional activities of 2012
Cheong U participates at the luncheon of MGTO’s Annual Press Conference
Cheong U with MGTO officials and representatives
Macau Government Tourism Office Director João Manuel Costa Antunes unveiled today that the visitor arrivals of last year reached 28 million, an increase of 12.2%. MGTO will set up a working team to initiate a three-tier working plan for tourism this year to be in line with the positioning of building Macau as the World Center of Tourism and Leisure.
At the MGTO Annual Press Conference held today (Jan 10) at the Macau Tower Convention and Entertainment Center, Director Antunes reviewed last year's tourism development of Macau and outlined this year's tourism strategies and marketing promotional activities to over 400 attendants including MGTO representatives around the world, travel industry partners and around 80 international and local media.
Speaking at the press conference, Antunes said that according to the preliminary figures, visitor arrivals to Macau hit 28,002,000 last year, registering an increase of 12.2% over 2010. Close to 25 million visitors were from the Greater China region, with a growth of 13.5%. International visitors rose by 2.2% to reach almost 3 million, representing10.9% of the total arrivals, while the number of international visitors was just about 580,000 in 1999 when the Macau SAR established, 7.8% of the total arrivals.
The Mainland, Hong Kong and Taiwan, China continue to be the top three visitor generating markets. Visitors from the Mainland exceeded 16 million last year, scoring a surge of 22.2%. Among which 50% was from Guangdong province. Korea also performed well last year, with a rise of 20.2% to record close to 400,000 visitors.
Antunes noted that 46.2% of total arrivals or close to 13 million visitors stayed overnight last year, a growth of 8.4%. From January to October, 66% of the total overnight stay or 7 million stayed in hotels, jumped by 10%. The average length of stay of the same period stood at 1.53 nights.
He continued that the Mainland, Taiwan, China and Korea scored the highest growth in overnight guests in the first ten months, and India, which was not among the top ten markets, ranked sixth in terms of hotel overnight guests. USA, the United Kingdom and New Zealand were the top three markets by length of stay.
In the first 3 quarters of 2011, the total visitor expenditure hit US$25.3 billion, a rise of 33.5% over the same period of 2010. Per-capita spending in the 3rd quarter of 2011 reached US$204.1, a surge of 6.8%.
The average occupancy rate of Macau's hotels and guesthouses in the first ten months was 83%, increased by 4.3 percentage points. The average room rate for 3 to 5-star hotels in the first 11 months recorded a surge of 14.8%, reaching US$167. Total number of occupied rooms from January to October was 5.36 million, a rise of 14.9%.
Currently, Macau has 65 hotels and 32 guesthouses, providing 23,222 rooms (guesthouses and 2 to 5-star deluxe hotels). There are 157 travel agencies and 1,518 tour guides in Macau.
He pointed out that the " Strategic MICE Market Stimulation Program" supported 379 events in 2011, involving over 2 million participants.
Antunes expressed that with the positioning of Macau as a World Center of Tourism and Leisure, Macau is leveraging this strategic position and development direction. Last year, MGTO organized the Round Table Seminar on "How to Build a World Center of Tourism and Leisure to gather opinions and suggestion and invited experts from PATA to visit Macau to study the positioning of Macau as a World Center of Tourism and Leisure. MGTO also attended the seminars of the SAR Government Policy Research Cabinet to give opinions in tourism aspects.
He added that to optimize industry management and enhance tourism service quality, China National Tourism Administration and MGTO jointly implement the Key Points for Contracts between Travel Agencies and Tour Operators Handling Mainland Tour Groups to Macau last year. MGTO also started to publish room rates of hotels and guesthouses on its website from last December on a permanent basis as a reference for visitors and residents.
MGTO set up working team to initiate three-tier plan
Antunes stressed that targeting the positioning of Macau as a World Center of Tourism and Leisure, policies and measures will be adjusted to give priority to develop a comprehensive tourism development plan and at the same time, MGTO will devote efforts in regional cooperation, quality tourism, tourism product mix and innovative promotion to build Macau into a quality tourism destination.
He pointed out that MGTO will set up an internal working team to initiate the following three-tier working plans on tourism this year to be in line with the government's building of Macau as a World Center of Tourism and Leisure. Medium to long Term Global Plan: to suggest a medium to long-term development plan for the tourism sector from the global perspective, aiming to develop a comprehensive development plan for the tourism industry and tourism authority that is in line with the positioning; Medium Development Plan: to timely make adjustment in regard to tourism development indicators and the existing tasks of MGTO while developing special plan for the tourism sector targeting the positioning; Short Term Individual Action Plans: in response to the immediate needs and existing problems of the tourism sector, short term individual action plans will be carried out to make immediate improvements through cross-departmental cooperation with the views of the tourism industry.
He expressed that MGTO supports the development of budget hotels and will coordinate with the related groups of the tourism industry to launch an online booking platform in 2012 to enhance its online promotion. In addition, cross-department reviews will be carried out on the effectiveness and execution of the law on "Prohibition of Providing Illegal Accommodation" and analysis and adjustment in strategies will be made according to the changing circumstances.
Antunes said that MGTO will continue to adopt the promotional theme and slogan of "Touching Moments - Experience Macau" while channels like smart phone and social networking will be used to expand scope of information dissemination. New interactive tourism website will also be launched.
Regarding regional tourism cooperation, he noted that collaboration will be strengthened under the existing cooperation framework, and will work closely with the tourism industry and step up inspections at checkpoints and provide training for the inspectors to enhance the implementation of the Key Points for Contracts between Travel Agencies and Tours Operators Handling Mainland Tour Groups to Macau. MGTO will grasp the opportunity of its Director being the Chairman of PATA from this year to strength international exchange.