Published on : Friday, November 8, 2019
Dane Cheng, the new executive director of Hong Kong Tourism Board starts this week, vowing to “lead our team to deal with the challenges and work closely with our trade partners to maintain Hong Kong’s status as a preferred travel destination.”
He has his job cut out for him. In August 2019, arrivals in Hong Kong dropped by 39 percent to 3.56 million over August 2018, as per the newest available data from the board, sending hotel occupancy fall sharply to 66 percent. The International Air Transport Association reported the passenger traffic in Hong Kong in the month of August dropped 15.4 percent over August 2018, warning that “any further prolongation of the disturbances (protests) may induce airlines to more drastically change the amount of services, either in terms of seats and/or frequencies.”
Cheng repeated that the city has strong rudiments and provides a variety of unique experiences to the tourists that have helped it to sail through many obstacles in upholding its status as a superlative destination.
He replaced long-time Hong Kong tourism Chief Anthony Lau, who came to a decision to revamp his contract, which came to an end on July 31, to spend more time with his family.
A statement disclosed that one reason Cheng was selected for the job is his marketing chops and connections. In 1986, after graduating from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Cheng joined Cathay Pacific Airways and held senior positions at the head office and different regions. He was director of sales and marketing overseeing the group’s worldwide passenger businesses.