James Morris - Mar 2, 2009
Macau is among the tourism economies that are not that hardly hit by the global crisis. It has managed to attract some 30 million visitors last year.For years the Chinese special region Macau has been dependent on its tourism. The industry generates approximately fifty per cent of the region’s GDP and despite the global economic crisis it is doing quite well. Last year (2008) the region received 30 million tourists which was an increase of 11 percent compared to 2007. This is more than Hong Kong did. For the first time Macau attracted more tourists than the former British colony. On the other hand tourism generates only some 3 per cent of Hong Kong’s GDP. Mainland China is the most important source market for the Macau Special Administrative Region. Majority of tourist are from the mainland. In 2007 Mainland Chinese comprised 55.1 per cent of visitors and in 2008 the percentage grew to 58. Taiwan is among other important markets. Macau has 57 hotels and 18,820 rooms and probably the biggest attraction for tourists is its gambling sector. Nevertheless, there are also other attractions. For example the Historic Centre of Macau which is on the UNESCO world heritage list.The region was doing well despite the crisis but it is unlikely to stay completely untouched by it. Macau was among the regions with growing tourism last year but according to the Economist Intelligence Unit Outlook for Macau for 2009-2010, there will be significant deterioration in the short term. Nevertheless, long term perspectives are still positive.Macau officials have a proactive approach to the tourism sector. They want to diversify it and give it more promotion world wide. Earlier this February the Macau Government Tourist Office (MGTO) has appointed an Indonesian tourism consulting firm as its representative in Indonesia. The aim is obvious; to further promote Macau as a tourism destination suitable for local people.  Related:AIRBUS A380 TO INCLUDE FLYING CASINO?Macau - the Chinese Las Vegas

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