The Macau government collected just above MOP19.64 billion (US$2.46 billion) in tax revenue from the city’s gaming industry in the first six months of this year, according to the latest official data released by the Financial Services Bureau.
The figure represented nearly 39.3 percent of the MOP50.01-billion that the Macau government had estimated to receive for full-year 2021, according to its budget plan. It was however down 9.8 percent from the first half of 2020.
In June alone, the gaming tax take was just above MOP4 billion, up 23.4 percent from the MOP3.25-billion collected in May. Judged year-on-year, the June gaming tax take was up by 431 percent.
The government taxes the gross gaming revenue (GGR) of Macau casinos at a rate of 35 percent, but other levies on the casino gaming gross, raise the tax rate to 39 percent in effect.
Other taxes on the Macau gambling sector include levies on the income of Chinese traditional lotteries, on horse racing, and on instant lotteries. There is also tax on commissions earned by operators of gambling junkets.
Macau’s tax-take figures in a given calendar period, and the city’s casino GGR in such a time frame, are not directly comparable for a number of reasons. They include the fact that there is typically a delay between the point where GGR is recorded in Macau casino operations, and the point at which tax is registered by the Macau government as having been paid on such play.
Macau’s casino GGR for June was MOP6.54 billion, a decline by 37.4 percent sequentially. The city’s aggregate casino GGR in the first six months of this year stood at MOP49.02 billion, an increase of 45.4 percent on the MOP33.72 billion achieved in the first six months of 2020.
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Vitaly Umansky, Louis Li and Kelsey Zhu
Analysts at brokerage Sanford C. Bernstein Ltd