The number of tourists visiting Macau is expected to drop this month, making the 40 million visitors target to the enclave impossible.
Reporting before the International Council for Small Business, Macau Tourism Office director Maria Helena de Senna said that tourism was likely to drop in 2019.
“I believe that in November we will see, for the first time, a decrease in visitor arrivals. I also believe that we have witnessed a decrease in visitors of the Macau Grand Prix last month”, said Senna Fernandes.
The first ten Months of 2019 was successful partly because of the opening of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge. Now officials of the special administration of China are forecasting a drop in gaming revenue in the first half of 2020. According to Casino.org, six Macau casinos are facing various difficulties, including the US-China trade war. The weakness of the Chinese economy has also confounded the situation in Macau, leading to a drop in the gross gaming revenue (GGR).
The new visa restriction policy has worsened the situation in Macau. As the state prepares to celebrate the 20th anniversary since the enclave was handed to china by Portugal; the gaming operators will be negatively impacted. Senna Fernandes acknowledged that strict visa policy is hampering tourism in Macau, but did not shy from blaming the pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong for the restriction. He insisted that the geopolitical volatility in Hong Kong was keeping international visitors from Mainland China from visiting Macau. The protest has been going on for around six months and has left several people dead.