Approximately “8,000” casino staff in Macau have so far joined the local government’s voluntary pension scheme. So said Ieong Iun Lai, head of the department administering the central provident fund, during a Friday radio show hosted by the Chinese-language channel of local public broadcaster TDM.
According to some casino labour groups, the number of people in the scheme could have been higher, but for the fact people can only receive benefits from it when they reach 65, the official retirement age in Macau. Choi Kam Fu, a vice-director at the Macao Federation of Trade Unions, made that point to local media on Thursday.
The scheme – officially the Non-Mandatory Central Provident Fund (CPF) – is meant to give Macau residents an income in their old age, complementing other provisions of the social security system in the city.
Speaking on the Friday radio show, Ms Ieong said she expected a “gradual increase” in the number of casino employees that participate in the voluntary pension scheme. City-wide, there are approximately 156 employers that have joined this scheme, Ms Ieong noted to the audience.
All six Macau casino operators have a commitment to make contributions on behalf of employees under the voluntary pension scheme. Sands China Ltd, Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd, Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd and Wynn Macau Ltd had announced previously that they would join the CPF in July.
Two other casino operators in Macau, SJM Holdings Ltd and MGM China Holdings Ltd, are already in it, as conditions for the extension of their respective gaming concessions until June 26, 2022.
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Andrew Lee and David Katz
Analysts at brokerage Jefferies LLC