The Macau Statistics and Census Service estimates that Typhoon Mangkhut caused economic losses to the city amounting to MOP1.55 billion (about US$192.1 million), including MOP960 million in losses to the gaming industry.
A written statement posted online on Monday by the Statistics and Census Service said the storm is estimated to have caused direct losses of MOP520 million and indirect losses of MOP1.03 billion. All the losses to the gaming industry were considered indirect.
Casinos in Macau were closed from late on Saturday, September 15 until the following Monday morning while Typhoon Mangkhut passed close to the city – something that had never happened before since the casino industry liberalisation in 2002.
The precautionary closure of all casinos was agreed by the government and the six operators of Macau casinos. The government said afterwards that it had yet to consider whether to make such closures mandatory when a strong storm threatens Macau.
The Statistics and Census Service said its estimate covered economic losses of businesses, and losses caused to homes and vehicles of households, municipal facilities and certain public service systems, among other things. The statement said the government and the community in Macau were well prepared for Typhoon Mangkhut, so curbing the harm the storm did to the economy.
Mangkhut was one of the fiercest recorded storms ever to hit Macau. It passed over the city with wind speeds of about 160 kilometres per hour (99.4 mph), causing serious flooding in the city and damage to infrastructure. Floodwater levels reached up to 1.9 metres (6.2 feet) above road level in some areas.
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"The MSAR [Macau Special Administrative Region] Government is always maintaining its policy not to have imported labour to work as dealers. This position has not changed"
Lionel Leong Vai Tac
Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance