Hotels and casinos reopen in Macau, but the number of visitors continues to fall

21 February 2020

Sixteen of the 29 hotels and bed and breakfast establishments in Macau that had closed due to the threat of Covid-19 disease have re-opened, said on Thursday Inês Chan Lou, of the Macau Government Tourism Office.

Among the hotels that have reopened are the Four Seasons in Cotai, the Altira in Taipa and the Sofitel-Ponte 16 on the Macau peninsula.

The opening also coincided with the re-opening of 29 of the 39 casinos in Macau that, from now on, are implementing exceptional measures of health safety and control of movements of customers and employees.

Meanwhile, the Macau Airport Company (CAM) has said that between 1 and 16 February the number of passengers fell by 80% and the movement of aircraft by 70%.

The director of the Macau Health Bureau, Lei Chin Ion, said that it had so far been possible to reduce the risk of the epidemic but noted the need for residents to continue to take preventive measures against the spread of Covid-19, namely staying at home, whenever possible, and wearing masks.

For the last 16 days, there have been no new cases of Covid-19 reported in Macau and of the 10 individuals who contracted the disease six have been discharged from hospital.

The government also determined that visitors travelling from the provinces of Henan, Guangdong, Zhejiang and the cities of Beijing, Chongqing and Shanghai must undergo medical examinations for entry into the Macau Special Administrative Region.

Residents of Hubei have been banned from entering Macau since the outbreak of the epidemic unless they present a hospital certificate to confirm they do not have the virus.

Since Thursday thousands of non-resident workers who work in Macau, but live in the neighbouring municipality of Zhuhai, can only enter the territory with a hospital certificate stating they are not affected by Covid-19 or they will be placed in quarantine.

Schools and universities will remain closed as will museums, libraries, theatres, sea transport to Hong Kong, bars, saunas and sports stadiums.

The Macau Literary Festival, which was due to be hosted in March has been cancelled, as was also the case with the Macau Arts Festival.

The Government of Macau on Monday resumed its activity but only for urgent cases which, however, require a prior appointment in order to avoid people gathering together in public offices.

After closing for two weeks, public offices opened with reduced staff and with users required to fill out an electronic document, provided by the health services, to declare their state of health.

The government also requires all employees and users of public services to use masks to enter the premises. (macauhub)

MACAUHUB FRENCH