Hong Kong News

Nonpartisan, Noncommercial, unconstrained.
Friday, Mar 31, 2023

Hong Kong’s struggling arts hub pins hopes on mainland Chinese tourists

Hong Kong’s struggling arts hub pins hopes on mainland Chinese tourists

Direct bus line from high-speed rail terminus at West Kowloon to the arts hub among a slew of new initiatives to entice visitors.

Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District arts hub is pinning its hopes on mainland Chinese tourists amid the full resumption of cross-border travel, a senior official has said, after it recorded widening losses last year.

Betty Fung Ching Suk-yee, CEO of the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority which oversees the arts hub, on Wednesday unveiled new initiatives to attract visitors in the wake of the return of quarantine-free travel with the mainland earlier this month after three years.

Fung said she expected the share of revenue from ticket sales to increase to between 20 and 30 per cent following the border reopening.

An event by the Hong Kong Tourism Board at the West Kowloon Cultural District.

“If I am optimistic enough, I think [the travellers] will help with our deficit issue. Admission income is a very important source of revenue for us,” Fung said.

The Hong Kong Palace Museum has attracted 710,000 visitors since its opening last July, while 2.48 million people have flocked to the M+ museum of visual culture, which is also part of the arts hub, since November 2021.

The art precinct’s net losses almost doubled from HK$869 million (US$111.3 million) in 2021 to HK$1.56 billion in 2022, but 2023 marks the first year that the two museums, which opened during Hong Kong’s strict Covid-19 pandemic control measures, will be able to welcome travellers from both the mainland and overseas who do not need to quarantine to enter the city.

To entice visitors, the authority will launch a direct bus line from the cross-border high-speed rail terminus at West Kowloon to the arts hub and water taxi services across Victoria Harbour. Car parks will be increased to solve the area’s long-standing traffic congestion problem.

Despite the widened deficit, Fung said current funding was enough for the cultural district to operate until the end of 2024, as a commercial site was sold to Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP) for HK$10.5 billion in November last year, and sales from venue bookings and memberships, as well as the number of sponsors, was better than expected in 2022.

More spending is expected as the hub’s two museums will each hold three special exhibitions and other additional events in the cultural area this year. The cultural district’s second phase, which includes the Lyric Theatre Complex, is expected to open in 2025.

The West Kowloon Cultural District Authority is a self-financing statutory body. M+ and the Palace Museum currently require HK$600 million a year in funding, the authority head said.

Fung said given the city’s financial challenges, it was not the “right time” to ask the government for funding. However, she said she expected the city could cooperate for the special exhibitions or programmes in terms of communication and publicity. “This is also a type of funding,” she said.

M+ began charging fees last November for entrance and attracted 420,000 visitors after it ended its year-long free admission.

Related Articles

Hong Kong News
Don’t Dismiss China’s Peacemaking Bid
Austrian Parliament members walk out when Volodymyr Zelensky begins speaking.
Father obliterates council members following viral TikTok of biological male masturbating in women’s bathroom..
Tsai Ing-wen received a "warm welcome" from the Chinese people in the US.
EU's von der Leyen: "We know this is an era where we rely on one single supplier. China. 98% of our rare earth supply."
China and Brazil have signed a new deal that will allow them to trade in their own currencies, bypassing the US dollar as an intermediary
Elon Musk and Others Call for Pause on A.I., Citing ‘Profound Risks to Society’
“We've had evidence prior to the pandemic that masks were largely ineffective at preventing community transmission of influenza “
Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz:
Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz rejects being labeled a "billionaire"
Jamie Dimon is being deposed over JPMorgan Chase role in Epstein lawsuits
Brand new security footage has just been released to the public showing the Active shooter Audrey Elizabeth Hale drove to Covenant Church School in her Honda Fit this morning, parked, and shot her way into the building
Social Media censoring users for saying the true
Smart Iranian fashion designer teaching dummy TV anchors lesson about reality
U.S. charges FTX's Bankman-Fried with paying $40 million bribe
Fallen 'Crypto King' Who Owes Millions to Investors Was Kidnapped and Tortured
Regulators blame social media for SVB's rapid collapse: 'Complete game changer'
AOC explains why she opposes banning TikTok
Singapore’s Prime Minister says China and US need to stabilize relations because world can't afford a confict between the two superpowers
In a dramatic U-turn against His Government: Judicial Reform Legislation Must Be Halted, Says Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant
Gordon Moore, a co-founder of Intel Corporation, died at 94
Powell: Silicon Valley Bank was an 'outlier'
Bordeaux town hall set on fire in France pro democracy protest
Police violence in Paris
Paris: Some of the police are stepping down and showing solidarity with the protesters.
Donald Trump arrested – Twitter goes wild with doctored pictures
NYPD is setting up barricades outside Manhattan Criminal Court ahead of Trump arrest.
Credit Suisse's Scandalous History Resulted in an Obvious Collapse - It's time for regulators who fail to do their job to be held accountable and serve as an example by being behind bars.
Goldman Sachs cuts outlook for European bank debt over Credit Suisse crisis
Paris Rioting vs Macron anti democratic law
'Sexual Fantasy' Assignment At US School Outrages Parents
The US government has charged Chinese businessman Guo Wengui with leading a $1 billion fraud scheme that cheated thousands of followers out of their money.
Credit Suisse to borrow $54 billion from Swiss central bank
The BBC problem about China
Russian Hackers Preparing New Cyber Assault Against Ukraine
"Will Fly Wherever International Law Allows": US Warns Russia After Drone Incident
If this was in Tehran, Moscow or Hong Kong
Announcing GPT-4
TRUMP: "Standing before you today, I am the only candidate who can make this promise: I will prevent World War III."
China is calling out the US, UK, and Australia on their submarine pact, claiming they are going further down a dangerous road
A brief banking situation report
We are witnessing widespread bank fails and the president just gave a 5 min speech then walked off camera.
Donald Trump's asked by Tucker Carlson question on if the U.S. should support regime change in Russia?.
'No relation to the American SVB': India's SVC Bank acts to calm depositors amid brand name confusion.
Good news: The U.S. government is now guaranteeing all deposits, held by, Silicon Valley Bank, and the funds are available as of today
Silicon Valley Bank exec was Lehman Brothers CFO
In a potential last-ditch effort, HSBC is considering a rescue deal to save Silicon Valley Bank UK from insolvency
Saudi Arabia has announced a major breakthrough in diplomacy with Iran after two years of intense talks
Elon Musk Is Planning To Build A Town In Texas For His Employees