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Lantau seeks to become tourist paradise

出自香港新聞網 - 樹仁新傳系學生實習習作

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3/12/2013 by Quinn Chan Ka Chun


Lantau seeks to become tourist paradise

By Quinn Chan Ka Chun


Dec 3 Lantau Island should develop itself into an exhibition and shopping hub targeting the middle class to alleviate the pressure faced by retail industry in the town district, chief of Lantau Development Alliance said.


Allen Ha, Chairman of Lantau Development Alliance, said that developing tourism and hospitality industry in Lantau District could help tackle the shortage of commercial lands in the commercial areas downtown, adding that the current shortage, which has driven up shop rents and goods prices, has smothered the positive effects brought by pro-tourism policies like mainland’s individual visitors policy.


“The public cannot feel the benefit from the growth of Hong Kong’s tourism because most of the money goes to those high-end shops and services,” he said, continued that the growing speed of hotel rooms is lagging behind tourist growth.


Ha said even though tourists would visit tourist attractions like Disneyland and attend events in AsiaWorld-Expo, they would still spend their money in major business districts like Tsim Sha Tsui, an outflow of revenue Ha blamed on the lack of facilities in the Lantau District.


“There isn’t even a bus route connecting AsiaWorld-Expo and Disneyland,” he said.


He said building hotels and shopping malls, rather than expanding attractions, could help retain tourist’s expenditure inside Lantau Island.


“We don’t need more tourists attractions like Disneyland”


He also said Lantau district, which will be reached by the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge by 2016, should develop more middle-class shopping malls to turn the whole district into a one-stop tourism area. These shopping malls would also invite new brands that are too small to enter large shopping malls.


“We would not build another Pacific Place.”


The CEO of AsiaWorld-Expo believed that the Lantau’s biggest exhibition centre would position itself as a “3-to-4-stars” exhibition centre, which concentrates in organizing public exams and retail exhibitions while differentiating it from high-end exhibition venues that target financial events.


The Chairman also hopes the development blueprint would boost employment in the community, whose population earns the lowest salary among all areas in Hong Kong. He said the labour force in the area needs train up to meet the increasing employment needs for firms operating in Lantau Island, like the Airport Authority and other hotels.
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