Hong Kong’s hotel workers are paying the price for three months of anti-government protests, with many placed involuntarily on paid and unpaid leave as occupancy rates plummet.
The South China Morning Post has learned that the Mira Hong Kong, situated in the bustling tourist district of Tsim Sha Tsui, has become the latest of the city’s high-end hotels to put employees on leave, with scores of housekeeping staff at the 492-room hotel set for an unwanted break.
A few streets away in the same district, the waterfront 503-room InterContinental Hong Kong hotel has asked permanent members of staff to take annual leave and unpaid leave to save money, with 10 hotels operated by tycoon Li Ka-shing’s CK Asset Holdings reportedly making a similar move.
Protests had damaged the city’s economy, reporting shrinking figures in tourist arrivals and room occupancy rates.
Commerce minister Edward Yau Tang-wah earlier said the number of inbound tourists dropped more than 30% for the first 10 days in August, and industry figures said the protests could be worse for Hong Kong than the 2003 Sars outbreak.
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