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Bridging the entertainment gap

HKZM bridge could cause Disneyland to steal non-gaming tourists from MSAR

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Leung Chung-ying, more commonly known as CY Leung, is confident that the completion of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge will funnel more visitors from the Pearl River Delta and Southeast Asia region into Hong Kong, boosting not only the city’s tourism sector, but also the controversial Disneyland expansion.
The comments came at the opening of the park’s first Marvel-themed ride, the Iron Man Experience, just weeks after the park announced a 9 per cent hike in ticket prices to help finance a polemic expansion of the complex – set to cost a total of HK$10.9 billion (US$1.36 million), of which HK$5.8 billion will come from taxpayers, if the company’s request to the Legislative Council is approved, as noted by the South China Morning Post.
“The expansion, together with the completion of major cross-boundary infrastructure in the next few years, including one of the longest bridges in the world, the Hong Kong-Macau-Zhuhai bridge that will provide a fixed road link between Lantau Island [where Disneyland is located], and the west bank of the Pearl River Delta area, will bring in more visitors from the Mainland of China, Southeast Asia and the world beyond,” stated the HKSAR Chief Executive, as quoted by publication 7th Space.
“The government will, as always, support the development of Hong Kong Disneyland and the tourism sector,” commented the official.
Meanwhile, the results of public opinion consultations on tourism carried out by the Macau Government Tourism Office were published yesterday, and show that building a theme park in Macau to attract further tourism is ‘quite ill-considered’, ‘impractical and not feasible’, according to some of the responses received, which point out nearby Chimelong Ocean Kingdom as well as Hong Kong Disneyland.
Disneyland’s price increase now makes it 42 per cent more expensive than the newly opened Disney Shanghai on non-public holidays, and 5.6 per cent more on public holidays, notes the South China Morning Post, who quoted Dr. Markus Schuckert – assistant professor at the Polytechnic University in the city – as saying: “Tourism is not booming. Is it really necessary to do it right now?”