Macau’s gaming regulator, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau – also known by the Portuguese acronym DICJ – is planning to “expand the scope” of an ongoing consultation on a proposal for Macau casino workers to be barred from entering casinos during non-work hours.
Last year, representatives from 11 Macau casino worker groups had broadly backed a government suggestion that casino workers be barred from taking part in any gaming-related activity inside casinos during non-work hours.
“We already consulted some [labour] groups, but we hope to expand the scope of the consultation on this issue,” said on Wednesday Leong Man Ion, deputy director of the casino regulator. He added that the aim was to gather a larger number of opinions on the matter from the city’s casino workers.
He was speaking on the sidelines of an award presentation ceremony for a dealer uniform design contest for casino resort Grand Lisboa Palace. The latter is a property in Macau’s Cotai district being developed by casino operator SJM Holdings Ltd.
Mr Leong told reporters the government had no schedule for the introduction of the potential bam.
A similar ban already exists for the city’s civil servants, who usually are only authorised to gamble in casinos during the Chinese New Year holiday period. It is also common practice in the local industry for gaming operators to bar their own staff from gambling on company premises.
Macau’s Social Welfare Bureau – also a unit of the Macau government – expressed last year support for the suggestion to bar Macau casino workers from entering casinos during non-work hours. Hon Wai, deputy director of the bureau, said at the time that the ban could help lower the risk of these workers developing a gambling addiction.
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”Given that the blanket casino closure [in Macau due to Typhoon Mangkhut] happened on an all-important weekend day… we expect that somewhere between MOP1.1 billion [US$136.2 million] and MOP1.5 billion in GGR will be lost”
Analyst at Union Gaming Securities Asia