Casino resort investor Landing International Development Ltd says it has agreed to lease 9.5 hectares (23.5 acres) of land in Manila, the Philippine capital, to “develop an integrated leisure and entertainment resort”.
The Monday filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange added it would feature “among other” things, a “Filipino culture theme park, an indoor water park, an indoor movie-based theme park, a convention centre, hotels, a retail mall and other commercial and entertainment facilities”.
The document did not mention gaming. But at a company event at the group’s new Jeju Shinhwa World casino resort in Jeju, South Korea in March, Yang Zhihui, chairman and executive director of Landing International, said that the group’s application for a gaming licence from the Philippine casino regulator, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp, a body also known as Pagcor, had been “under negotiation” since “last year”.
At the March event, Mr Yang also reiterated he had meetings last year with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte regarding possible development of a “theme park integrated resort” in that country.
In Monday’s filing, the group said the land in question was at Parañaque City (pictured) in Metro Manila.
“The group is currently in the process of applying to the relevant authorities for all necessary approvals to develop and operate the integrated resort,” added the statement.
It further noted: “The integrated resort, if approved and completed, will add to the group’s portfolio of world-class integrated destination resorts with premium leisure and entertainment facilities which cater local and overseas visitors of all ages currently headlined by Jeju Shinhwa World in Jeju, South Korea.”
The Philippine casino regulator said in statement emailed to GGRAsia on Tuesday in response to an enquiry made last week about a possible Landing International casino scheme for the Philippines: “Landing International Development Ltd has no pending formal application with Pagcor.”
The regulator added, regarding a question about the exact location of the resort: “Landing International has not submitted any location plans to Pagcor, hence we cannot answer that question with certainty.”
(Updated 9.53am, April 10)
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"If the [Macau casino] concessions are put up for bid, there will also be a lot of giant Chinese companies, some having nothing to do with gaming, which would like to take over these enormously successful casinos”
Professor emeritus at Whittier Law School in California, in the United States, and a visiting professor at University of Macau