Hong Kong expects to welcome a record 630,000 visitors during the Chinese New Year in February, a tourism official said in an interview published Wednesday.
Tourism Board Chairman James Tien told the South China Morning Post that he expected a 7-per-cent year-on-year increase on the 580,000 people who visited the former British colony in the first 10 days of last year's New Year's holiday.
The influx would put Hong Kong on course for as many as 30 million visitors in 2008 after a record 28 million visitors in 2007, he told the newspaper.
More than half of Hong Kong's visitors come from neighbouring mainland China, and visitor numbers have boomed since border restrictions were substantially eased in 2003.
Hong Kong has a population of 6.9 million and now receives more than four visitors for every resident of the high-rise city, which reverted to Chinese sovereignty in 1997. ( Dpa )