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Hong Kong Disney turns profit for 1st time

FILE - In this Jan. 15 2008 file phoMickey mouse other cartocharacters pose during parade as celebrating Chinese New Year

FILE - In this Jan. 15, 2008 file photo, Mickey mouse and other cartoon characters pose during a parade as celebrating the Chinese New Year with the year of the Ox in Hong Kong Disneyland. Disneyland in the southern Chinese city of Hong Kong has turned a profit for the first time since it opened in 2005. The park said Monday, Feb. 18, 2013, it earned 109 million Hong Kong dollars ($14 million) in 2012. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)

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Updated: March 20, 2013 6:32AM

HONG KONG — Disneyland in the southern Chinese city of Hong Kong has turned a profit for the first time since it opened in 2005, as new attractions helped push visitor numbers to a record, theme park officials said Monday. 

The park earned $14 million Hong Kong in the year that ended Sept. 29 and its revenue jumped 18 percent to $550 million. The park drew 6.73 million visitors, 13 percent more than the previous year, with guests spending 6 percent more than a year earlier.

Legislators and analysts have blamed the park’s poor performance on its small size. It’s the smallest of Burbank, Calif.-based Disney’s parks worldwide. But the 311-acre park, set on reclaimed land on Lantau island, will be a quarter bigger once an expansion is completed later this year.

Hong Kong Disneyland’s managing director, Andrew Kam, called the swing into profit a “significant milestone.”

“The business has turned a corner,” said Kam. He said the park expansion was “the most critical success factor that contributed to our result this year.”

The $465 million expansion adds three new attractions that Kam said allowed the park to draw more visitors. Two have opened, including one based on the “Toy Story” series of movies and another with a Wild West theme called “Grizzly Gulch.” AP

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