Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 04/01/2014 -- BMI's Hong Kong tourism report examines the strong long-term investment potential offered by this wellestablished market at the centre of the Asia Pacific region. Supported by substantial growth in mainland China, investment in the island's transport infrastructure continues, and we expect to see both inbound and outbound travel expand throughout our forecast period through to 2018.
Hong Kong is one of the key air travel transit hubs in the Asia Pacific region, with many long-haul travellers using the city as a short-break destination in between long flights connecting the Asia Pacific with the rest of the world. Hong Kong's airport is already one of the busiest in the world, and with a range of investments under way or planned, the country is well placed to keep up with the expected growth in inbound and outbound travel. Similarly, we are seeing an expansion in travellers using the range of sea travel connections to Hong Kong's various islands, reflecting the growing strength of this market.
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Thanks in large part to the booming economies of major source markets, particularly China, we expect arrivals to increase at a rate of around 8% per year throughout the forecast period, leading to an impressive annual arrivals figure of more than 78mn. This is an increase of more than 25mn on the not unsubstantial 2013 arrivals figure, which is estimated at 52.5mn.
Outbound travel is expected to grow at a slower rate of under 3% per year; however, considering the already impressive departures per population rate, this is not at all a reflection of the strength of the outbound travel market. Rather, it depicts the already high levels of travel, with annual outbound departures expected to reach around 11.3mn in 2014.
Inbound and outbound travel is dominated by travel to and arrivals from countries in the Asia Pacific region, and we expect this trend to continue throughout the forecast period thanks to Hong Kong's geographic location, range of travel connections and strong cultural ties to markets such as China.
As well as growth in the transport sector, we also expect to see growth in the already well-developed accommodation market. Many of the top global hotel chains are already established in Hong Kong, and despite limited real estate opportunities we expect to see several new properties open in the next few years, reflecting the deeply held confidence in the sustainability of Hong Kong's tourism market.
Key developments and forecasts in 2014 include:
- Hong Kong International Airport, already the 10th busiest international passenger airport in the world, will continue to expand air travel capacity.
- Outbound travel is expected to increase steadily between 2014 and 2018, reaching 12.6mn annual departures by the end of the forecast period.
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