Macau International Airport Co Ltd, operator of the airport in the special administrative region of Macau, reportedly estimates that for all of 2018 the facility will handle upwards of 8 million passengers.
GGRAsia reports that the estimate by the operating body known as CAM, represents a 12 percent year-on-year swell. In 2017, a record 7.16 million passengers were handled by Macau International Airport. The all-time record was aided by an increase in mainland China and Southeast Asia passenger markets. CAM reportedly communicated in January that it expected 7.38 million passengers to be handled by the airport in full-year 2018.
In a press release on Tuesday, CAM said that it expected flight movements in excess of 60,000 to be recorded this year while in 2017, 58,000 aircraft movements were seen by the facility, representing a 2.8% hike from 2016.
A total of 4 million passengers were handled by Macau International Airport in the first half of this year, an increase of 20% from the same time last year, as announced by CAM earlier this month. At that time, the operator of the airport said that from January 1 to June 30, the boost in passenger traffic was aided by three “major markets” including Taiwan, mainland China and Asia, which reportedly recorded 4%, 37% and 16%, respectively.
An expansion of the north part of the airport’s terminal building was completed in February, according to the operator’s statement. Currently, CAM is expanding the terminal building’s south part, with the project goal of raising the overall passenger capacity of the airport to 10 million annually, according to previous announcements by the operator.
Tourists to the city are comprised mostly of gamblers in Macau’s casinos. Day-trippers are not regarded as highly as overnight visitors, which some tourists arriving by air are likely to be, according to the news agency. However, various investment analysts have reportedly said that historically, a direct correlation between the city’s headline visitor numbers and overall gaming demand has not been found, as gross gaming revenue in the former Portuguese territory’s market has typically been skewed to that of high-end play.