Hong Kong's economic recovery gains pace as Chinese mainlanders flow in
Published: Feb 12, 2023 07:02 PM
Hong Kong Photo: VCG

Hong Kong Photo: VCG

The economy of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) is getting a boost from increased retail spending from surging visitors from the Chinese mainland on the first weekend after the full resumption of cross-border travel on February 6.

The number of visitors to Hong Kong from the Chinese mainland and the rest of the world are now recovering, propelling local retail sales, tourism, hotel business and logistics which are picking up, Hong Kong Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said in his blog on Sunday.

Nearly 50,000 travelers from the Chinese mainland arrived in Hong Kong on Saturday, the latest data from Hong Kong's immigration department showed, with the number of mainland visitors exceeding 190,000 since February 6. 

Tourists were seen lining up in front of boutique stores in areas like Tsim Sha Tsui. A tourist surnamed Zhang from Guangzhou city, neighboring Guangdong Province, said that she spent more than $HK 60,000 ($7,644.5) to purchase shoes, perfume and purses, and she plans to come back on the following weekend to pick up another purse which was out of stock, reported on Sunday. 

Zhang said that it only takes a short time from Guangzhou to Hong Kong via the high-speed train system, and shopping in Hong Kong is just as convenient as in Guangzhou. 

Hong Kong's retail sales are ticking up since the end of 2022, with the latest figure showing an improvement in spending on catering businesses, according to Chan, noting that Hong Kong's restaurants have generated $HK 9 billion in revenues, setting a record in three years. 

Chan noted that business revenues for catering in Hong Kong was set to go up during the resumption phase amid the recovery of local consumption and the increase in the number of visitors, while anticipating the total revenue for the sector to reach $HK 10 billion.

Hong Kong could see an estimated 7.6 percent GDP growth as export and tourism sector are rapidly recovering, boosted by the full resumption of cross-border personnel flow between Hong Kong and the mainland, China Economic Weekly reported earlier in February. 

The Chinese mainland fully resumed normal travel with the Hong Kong and Macao SARs starting from February 6.

Global Times