Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Alexis Tam praised the “synergy” of the annual marathon, the annual Latin City parade and the newly launched Macau Light Festival.
The policy secretary made the remarks on the sideline of the Light Festival’s opening ceremony at the Luis Gonzaga Gomes Sino-Luso Secondary School.
The Macau Galaxy Entertainment International Marathon kicked off Sunday’s trio of tourist events, starting at 6 a.m., with 8,000 marathon runners from around the world taking part. The marathon was followed by the “Parade through Macau, Latin City” and then the Macau Light Festival – Journey of Lights at night.
Tam said this was the first year in which various entities under his portfolio had worked together and organised multiple events on the same day, allowing for synergy between them and encouraging tourists to stay longer in the city.
Tam added that he will continue to encourage the entities to work together, either on one event, or several on the same day.
When asked by reporters whether Macau could expect the same number of tourists this year as in 2014 amidst the current gaming revenue decline, Tam said he was confident that the city will have about 31 million visitor arrivals by the end of year, which would be close to or the same as last year’s figure.
Meanwhile, two Ukrainians won 2015 Macau Galaxy Entertainment International Marathon.
According to a statement by the gaming operator, Ukraine’s Vitality Shafar won the male category in 2:14.44, while fellow Ukrainian Olena Shurkhno came in the first in 2:33.24 in the female category.
The statement said that 1,200 had joined the full marathon, 2,600 the half-marathon and 4,200 the mini-marathon.