It might be possible for Macau’s gaming industry to produce even more non-gaming revenue annually than targeted – when judged as a percentage of all revenue, said Paulo Martins Chan (pictured), director of the city’s casino regulator, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau.
But the government’s current non-gaming revenue target for the industry – set at 9 percent per year by 2020 and already passed by 2015 – had not been changed, Mr Chan added. He was speaking on Thursday on the sidelines of an event at Sands China Ltd’s Cotai resort the Venetian Macao.
Mr Chan stated, when asked by GGRAsia if there might be new government targets for non-gaming revenue generated by the local casino industry – prior to the possible refreshment of the six current operators’ gaming rights on various dates between 2020 and 2020: “Until now we don’t have any change on this policy. But hopefully things will run well… and even exceed this [9 percent] goal. But we don’t have any change of the policy yet.”
Wilfred Wong Ying Wai, president and chief operating officer of Sands China, had said in a speech during Thursday’s event, that the company had spent MOP2 billion (US$249.9 million) in 2016 with a total of 375 local small-, medium- and micro-sized suppliers.
On Thursday the firm launched its so-called “F.I.T.” programme. It signifies “financial support, invitational matching and training and development” for local small firms, to help them compete with outside businesses in bids to supply goods and services to Sands China.
Diversification of the local economy beyond gaming – and in particular beyond high-stakes, credit-based play – has been identified by the city’s government as a key policy aim, and one that coincides with the run-up to the expiry of the current casino concessions.
Regulator Mr Chan said – regarding Thursday’s event: “We [Macau] will keep doing this kind of activity as this is very helpful and a practical way for the operators to know the suppliers.”
In Macau’s Five-Year Development Plan – a package of policies and initiatives covering the period 2016 to 2020 published last year – the city’s government stated that non-gaming revenue within Macau’s casino sector should account on average for at least 9 percent of all revenue generated by Macau operators by 2020.
A report in January from Macau’s Statistics and Census Service indicated the goal had already been achieved by the end of 2015. That year, non-gaming accounted for 9.39 percent of overall revenue in the casino sector.
In other developments, the gaming bureau director said that his department had not yet received a request for gaming at The 13, a hotel project on the Coloane-Cotai border. The promoters of the scheme said in a Monday filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that they expected the hotel would be opened by the end of July.
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