Property developer Great Eagle Holdings has reported a 16.3 per cent drop in net profit to $616.41 million for the six months to March 31 this year, compared with the corresponding period a year earlier. Earnings per share dipped to $1.18, compared with last year's interim result of $1.60 per share. Great Eagle's board of directors declared an interim dividend of 15 cents per share, against 21 cents a share for the same period last year. The company said its local hotel business had suffered from the severe decline in tourist arrivals. 'Our two hotels and serviced apartments performed disappointingly in the second half of 1997 and the first half of 1998,' Great Eagle Holdings chairman Lo Ying-shek said. The Hong Kong Renaissance Hotel - which will be renamed the Great Eagle Hotel on July 1 - had an average room occupancy of 64.9 per cent for the interim period. Occupancy rates at the Eaton Hotel were 72 per cent while serviced apartment complex Eaton House had a 67.3 average occupancy rate. Overseas hotels performed much better, with occupancy rates as high as 86.5 per cent, Mr Lo said. The company expected a slow, gradual recovery in Hong Kong's tourism sector. The leasing rate for grade A office and retail space in Citibank Plaza averaged more than 97 per cent. About 97.9 per cent of the office space and 98.4 per cent of the retail space in their flagship building, Great Eagle Centre, was leased. In addition, about 92.3 per cent of the area in the shopping arcade and about 99.2 per cent of the food centre areas in Astor Plaza had been let. Mr Lo said despite the current unfavourable economic conditions in Hong Kong and around Asia, 'our grade A offices are still enjoying high occupancy with rentals at healthy levels'. 'However, in the coming year competition will intensify as increased supply from new developments becomes available,' he said.