Residents of Macau and neighbouring Hong Kong were hoping for a loosening of border restrictions this summer (photo courtesy Shutterstock).
Macau keeps borders closed and is warning resort operators to “prepare for a quiet” summer following rumours that ‘travel corridors’ may be set up with neighbouring SAR Hong Kong and Guangdong Province in southern China.
According to Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, director of the Macau Government Tourism Office (MGTO), Macau’s gaming and integrated resort operators should prepare for borders to remain closed during the summer period.
The MGTO is currently working with the hospitality industry to offer promotions for local residents in August. Senna Fernandes said it was unlikely that border restrictions would be “easily loosened” during the summer period.
“Chinese or foreign visitors are unlikely to enter Macau,” she said at a press conference.
“Residents aren’t able to travel anywhere under this pandemic either,” she added. “Schools will end their academic year in late July, so we encourage operators to provide more discounts to locals in August to drive expenditure on hospitality, dining and shopping.”
This month’s fresh coronavirus outbreak in Beijing, with more than 100 new cases, could further delay relaxing of border restrictions in the region.
Macau has recently launched a limited, chartered ferry schedule to Hong Kong International Airport to collect residents returning from overseas. The ferries will run until July 17.
Many of Macau’s attractions have been shuttered, including the popular House of Dancing Water spectacular. The show has no plans to reopen until January 2021.
Macau has survived the pandemic relatively unscathed, with just 45 cases and no deaths.