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Hong Kong restaurateur praises Macao’s tourism drive and admits to ‘problems with our competitiveness’

The spokesman for Hong Kong’s Association of Restaurant Managers says the city should follow Macao’s lead when it comes to tourism promotion
  • His comments come two weeks after top Hong Kong tycoon Allan Zeman said the city was lagging behind Macao when it came to attractions





The spokesman of a leading Hong Kong hospitality association has warned of the growing tourism threat posed by Macao.

“Maybe there are some problems with our competitiveness at the moment,” Jonathan Leung Chun of the Association of Restaurant Managers told the South China Morning Post. He was commenting on the sluggish performance of Hong Kong’s food and beverage sector during holiday periods, when Hong Kong residents leaving the city outnumber visitor arrivals.

“Macau seems to be investing heavily in marketing and promotion to attract visitors, which Hong Kong might consider doing in the future,” he said, noting that many Hong Kong residents flocked to Macao over the recent Dragon Boat Festival holiday instead of spending money at home.

[See more: Macao is winning at tourism, warns top Hong Kong business leader]

It is rare for Hong Kong hospitality figures to comment on the competitiveness of the SAR, which until recently was seen as a gambling destination and not a serious tourism rival.

Leung’s remarks come two weeks after one of the Hong Kong government’s top tourism advisers, the entertainment tycoon Allan Zeman, said the city was lagging behind Macao when it came to attractions.

Zeman said Macao has things “we don’t have” and added: “Macao is becoming an exciting city. Every week there’s new names coming, putting on shows, and it’s competition for us.”

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