During the event, Choudhary pointed to the effects of the pandemic on Macau and Asia as a whole, while confidently stating the Chinese gambling hub will thrive in the coming years: “The mass revenue and EBITDA will be bigger than in 2019, at least, that’s what we expect. We’re pegging that in 2024, but it could come in during the second half of 2023.”
So, while Macau still suffers through the mire of 2022's Covid restrictions, put in place by China, it is clear the financial institution expects the province to recover strongly in 2023/2024.
However, the VIP market – which has so often driven Macau’s numbers, isn’t expected to recover as rapidly when compared to other regions. Although Chaudhary said this could be a good thing, saying: “Having a higher slot business and lower VIP business could be positive for Macau.“
Currently, Macau represents 35% of the Asia VIP market, whereas it had a share of 72% prior to the pandemic in 2019. Meanwhile, Singapore has taken a significant part of VIP customers for itself, making up 24% of the VIP gambling pie in 2022, compared to 9% in 2019.
That said, it should be noted that the total value of the VIP market in 2022 is $16bn lower than it was in 2019 – crashing down from $20bn to $4bn – with Chaudhary expecting some of the VIP market to return to Macau in the coming months.