Concerns expressed over Macau's casino gaming concessions

By Violeta Prockyte

Experts believe Macau should extend the current gaming concessions to ensure a successful tender in the future.

Currently, Macau’s gaming licences are set to expire in 2022, but the Government has yet to announce the guidelines for re-application – or any requirements the operators would have to meet.

Antonio Lobo Vilela, a former senior legal advisor to the Macau Gaming Commission, stated that even if Macau manages to overcome the pandemic by next year, the tender would still have to be extended because the Government is not fully prepared from a legal standpoint, according to Asia Gaming Brief.

Casinos need to be revised since, according to him, “some properties have not been registered in the Macau land registry, despite being operational for years.”

Gaming operators also support the idea of an extended tender. SJM Holdings said the extension would give the industry time to recover. However, the Government stated back in November it has no plans for extensions, and that the application for the renewed casino concessions should go as planned, regardless of the ongoing pandemic.

Macau is currently expecting to recover some of its revenue during the surge of summer holiday visitors after a dip in revenue for June.

J.P. Morgan estimates that Macau’s GGR could see a 30% increase for July and August could add another 20% of growth. Tourism seems to be recovering in July, with 30,000 daily visitors, but the long-awaited travel bubble between Macau and Hong Kong might have to wait until the summer is over.

 

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