Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On said on Wednesday that a theme park is needed in Macau to boost family tourism.
Chui made the remarks when answering lawmaker-cum-developer Tommy Lau Veng Seng’s question during a Q&A plenary session in the legislature’s hemicycle.
The session came one day after Chui delivered his 2017 Policy Address.
Chui’s policy address states that the government will push for the construction of budget hotels, a theme park and shopping centres, in a bid to develop the city into a world tourism and leisure centre.
Chui said on Wednesday that a theme park was needed in the city, because it would diversify tourism – such as attracting more families. He added that family tourists were an important segment for the development of the city’s tourism sector.
Chui said that it was feasible for Macau to have a theme park. “Actually the city lacks a theme park,” he said, adding that a theme park would also benefit local residents.
Chui also said that budgets hotels were able to provide tourists with “a diversity of choices” of accommodation.
In March, the government said that it was processing 27 applications to run budget hotels in the city. The 27 applications involved over 1,700 guestrooms.
According to Chui, as of June this year, five-star hotel rooms accounted for 64 percent of the total number of hotel rooms in the city, double that in 2005. It showed that more other types of hotels were needed in the city, he said, adding, “There are different types of tourists in a world tourism and leisure centre.”
Chui also said that more shopping malls were needed in Macau.
According to Chui, Macau’s shopping gross areas amounted to 1.9 million square metres last year. He said that another 360,000 square metres of shopping areas would be needed by 2025 in the city, so as to meet the needs of tourists and residents.
Chui also said more shopping areas would be needed to accommodate more local retail brands in the future. “Shopping areas can also be used to display local cultural and creative products as well as local delicacies [in the future],” he said.
Chui also said the government would strive to support local small- and medium enterprises (SMEs) to become more involve in the government’s measures to diversity the tourism sector.
Meanwhile, in a reply to lawmaker-cumunionist Lam Heong Sang’s question, Chui urged young local people think carefully before starting their own business.
Lam, vice president of the legislature, asked Chui what measures the government would implement to support young local people in their career development or in launching their own business.
Chui said the government had implemented a raft of measures to help young people boost their competitiveness, apart from support measures for start-ups. Chui urged young people to grasp the opportunities available to them, adding that they enjoyed more opportunities than their counterparts in previous generations.
Chui urged young people to be cautious about whether to start their own business, adding he thought it was currently not easy for residents to start their own business.
Chui said studies showed that most of the business start-ups in recent years were primarily of just several types of businesses, such as restaurants, cafes and retail outlets. He said it showed that the start-ups in recent years are highly “homogeneous”, which he said had caused young start-uppers to face fierce competition.
Chui urged young local people to first join the job market to obtain work experience, before launching their own business. He said they would more likely be successful in their own business if they did that.
“It is better for young people to consider working [as an employee] after they graduate from university, so as to obtain work experience as well as to expand their social circle,” Chui said.
“What I worry about the most is that if a young person’s business fails it will damage their self-confidence,” Chui said.
“The government cannot ensure that every start-up will be successful,” Chui said.
(Macau News / The Macau Post Daily)