China will limit visits by residents of the city of Shenzhen to neighboring Hong Kong, a politician and media said on Sunday, following recent tension in the former British colony over growing numbers of mainland visitors.
Hong Kong has seen a groundswell of discontent over the number of mainland Chinese visiting the crowded city where frustration with what many residents see as attempts by Beijing to restrict democracy erupted in protests last year.
Shenzhen authorities would soon restrict residents to one Hong Kong visit a week, from an unlimited number of daily trips, said Michael Tien, a Hong Kong member of China's parliament, the National People's Congress.
"It will definitely happen," Tien told Reuters. "I've heard from very reliable government sources."
Hong Kong returned to Chinese rule in 1997 under a "one country, two systems" formula that ensured it autonomy. Visitors from the mainland need permission to visit.
Media said the curbs could come into effect as early as Monday. Shenzhen is just a short train ride from Hong Kong.
On the website where residents of Shenzhen apply for Hong Kong visas, the option for multiple visits a year could not be selected on Sunday.
There was no immediate response or confirmation from the Shenzhen government.