Macau authorities estimate that the gross gaming revenue (GGR) will reach 16.2 billion dollars in 2021, despite the low figures in the first half of the year. Macau Secretary for Economy and Finance Lei Wai Nong admitted that casino revenue was 25% lower than forecast in the first half.
The amount, however, was based on the flexibility of travel between Macau and Hong Kong, a plan to create a ‘travel bubble’ aimed at removing the restrictions. However, this idea continues to face problems and successive delays. But the government hopes the upcoming ‘Golden Week’, starting Oct. 1, will provide a much-needed boost.
“We have summer vacations, the ‘National Day Golden Week’, the ‘Grand Prix’ in November, plus December – traditionally a time when people take vacations,” the secretary said.
Angus Chan Chi-lap, Hong Kong’s head of strategy, said mass market customers would likely have the biggest impact on casino profits, as even in pre-pandemic times they contributed more than 80% to EBITDA.
The expert also believes that Macau will extend the current concession for at least two years, even though the government has recently declared no plans to extend it.
Macau must review its gaming industry legislation
At the same time, Macau is trying to change the laws of the gaming industry. The review should include a closer look at sub-leases and registration issues for some properties, as cited by the Asia Gaming Brief.
The public consultation will likely be launched later this year. After all, lawmakers called for the consultation to take place no later than mid-August, to allow more time to consider possible changes. Both the public consultation and the review of gaming laws are likely to impact current and future gaming licenses in Macau.