Chinese tourists enjoy higher duty-free allowances in Hong Kong and Macau starting July 1 | Travel - Hindustan Times
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Chinese tourists enjoy higher duty-free allowances in Hong Kong and Macau starting July 1

Bloomberg | | Posted by Zarafshan Shiraz
Jun 28, 2024 05:41 PM IST

Higher duty-free allowance for Chinese tourists to aid Hong Kong and Macau's economic recovery

Chinese visitors will be allowed up to 15,000 yuan ($2,064) of duty-free shopping in Hong Kong and Macau starting next week, around twice the current limit, as authorities try to help the cities still struggling to fully recover from Covid’s fallout.

Chinese tourists enjoy higher duty-free allowances in Hong Kong and Macau starting July 1 (Photographer: Raul Ariano/Bloomberg)
Chinese tourists enjoy higher duty-free allowances in Hong Kong and Macau starting July 1 (Photographer: Raul Ariano/Bloomberg)

The cap will be raised to 12,000 yuan from a current 5,000 yuan, while an existing tax waiver on 3,000 yuan worth of shopping at duty-free stores at the borders will remain, according to statements on Friday by Hong Kong, Macau and China’s Ministry of Finance.

The new measure is expected to bring Hong Kong as much as HK$17.6 billion ($2.25 billion) in spending each year, injecting up to HK$5.4 billion to its economy, the government said in its statement. The change will be effective from July 1, when Hong Kong celebrates the 27th anniversary of the city’s handover to Beijing from the UK.

Hong Kong and Macau have seen a slowdown in the post-pandemic recovery of their retail and tourism industries — a pillar for both cities’ economies — amid a slowdown in spending by Chinese visitors. Hong Kong in particular has seen fewer tourists compared with 2019 levels. That’s added to pressure on the financial hub, which has also suffered from an exodus of expatriates and local professionals wary of political turmoil and Covid closures.

Meanwhile, Macau, the world’s biggest gambling market, is increasingly shifting its focus to the mass-tourist market after Beijing’s crackdown on high-rollers. The city has required its six casino operators to invest more in non-gaming activities.

Sa Sa International Holdings Ltd., Hong Kong’s biggest cosmetics retailer chain, rose as much as 3.7% Friday. Shares in Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Ltd. also rose.

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This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.
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