Greater Bay Area will have its first-ever joint presence at ITB Berlin
Visa facilitation and new direct transport links are boosting growth in the Greater Bay area. The consolidation of the three regions to one large economic hub is part of the infrastructure milestones the Chinese government is pursuing in conjunction with the Road and Belt initiative. As this cooperation also encompasses the tourism sector, the three partners are looking forward to their first-ever joint presence at ITB Berlin.
China’s Greater Bay Area consists of two Special Administrative Regions: Hong Kong and Macao, together with nine municipalities of China’s most populated Guangdong Province.
Anthony Lau, Executive Director, Hong Kong Tourism Board, says the tourism sector is set to greatly benefit from this regional merger: “We are at the beginning of a golden age of opportunity that will make the Greater Bay Area a destination of choice for tourists from every corner of the world. By working together, we can steer the region’s tourism industry towards exciting new horizons.”
The main infrastructure improvement in the Greater Bay Area is the 55km long bridge, which connects Hong Kong, Macao and Zhuhai. The world’s longest sea bridge reduces the travelling time from Hong Kong International Airport on Lantau Island to Zhuhai to 45 minutes from four hours. The new route includes one tunnel and several bridging elements.
Another milestone is the completion of the Hong Kong section of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link, connecting the Hong Kong train network to the one in Mainland China. Travel time from the newly built Hong Kong Kowloon West station to Guangzhou North has halved to 48 minutes.
Lau says a major focus for international markets lies in the development of multi-destination travel packages. A “144 hours convenient visa” enables tourists an easy border crossing from Hong Kong or Macao to Guangdong. The cruise industry is also looking into developments in the Pearl River Delta, as the region offers multiple calls within a short distance.
Hall 26a / Stand 119