China and Hong Kong are poised to overtake New Zealand as the biggest source of tourists to Australia in a landmark development for the hospitality industry, research suggests. Australia will attract more tourists from China and Hong Kong than it does from New Zealand from mid-next year. The number of tourists from China and Hong Kong hit 1.14 million in the year to June - up 17.5% on the previous year. Five years ago, fewer than 600,000 visited. Tourist numbers from New Zealand totalled 1.27 million in the year to June and have also been growing steadily but at a far slower pace.