Gaming operations at the Resorts World Manila casino resort (pictured) resumed on Thursday. The confirmation was given in press releases issued respectively by the property’s operator Travellers International Hotel Group Inc and by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) – the country’s casino regulator.
“Travellers International… received today the letter of Pagcor lifting the June 9, 2017 suspension order of the company’s provisional licence, noting that the company has taken action to address the issues in its safety and security procedures, as well as the welfare of at least 6,000 strong workforce of the company and their families whose livelihood are affected by the suspension,” said the firm in a Thursday filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange.
The document added: “In line with this, the company is happy to announce that the gaming areas not affected by the June 2 incident will commence operations today.”
Travellers International is a venture between Philippine-based Alliance Global Group Inc and Genting Hong Kong Ltd.
In a separate release, Pagcor also confirmed that “after careful scrutiny and deliberations”, it had lifted the suspension order against the Resorts World Manila casino resort.
“The lifting of said suspension takes effect today (June 29, 2017), following Travellers International’s compliance with Pagcor’s required security and safety improvements,” the regulator said.
Pagcor stated improvements it had requested at the property included: the hiring of a new security agency and of experts to assess and improve safety and security systems there; more x-ray machines and metal detectors on site; and a doubling in the number of guards with firearms deployed at the property.
“Aside from compliance with security and safety improvements, Pagcor lifted the suspension order in consideration of Travellers International’s 6,000 gaming operations workforce, whose livelihood is now affected. Also, the government loses an average of PHP14 million [US$277,000] per day [in tax revenue] or PHP434 million a month as a result of the suspension order,” stated the press release from the regulator.
Pagcor noted that “the lifting of [the] suspension order does not disregard Travellers International’s officers and personnel of any criminal liability, which is to be determined by government investigating bodies.”
Officials from Resorts World Manila had asked last week that the regulator lift the suspension. In comments reported by the Manila Bulletin newspaper on Wednesday this week, Andrea Domingo, head of the gaming regulator, had said Pagcor was checking if the operator had complied with a checklist of requirements drawn up by the regulator. She added at the time that only after reviewing the Pagcor inspectors’ findings would a decision be taken.
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"With the mainlanders and Hong Kongers now effectively barred from entering Macau, the only rationale possible for keeping the casinos in Macau open right now is a social one which is to keep Macau residents employed"
Managing partner of IGamiX Management and Consulting Ltd