Inward direct investment – from outside investors – into Macau’s gaming sector jumped to MOP19.01 billion (US$2.36 billion) in 2018, show official data published on Wednesday. That compares with an outflow of MOP3.89 billion in the previous year.
Information from the city’s Statistics and Census Service indicated that overall flows of inward direct investment – from other parts of China or elsewhere – into Macau amounted to MOP26.86 billion in 2018, up from MOP3.52 billion in the previous year. The bureau said such inflows soared “mainly due to an increase in the profits retained for reinvestment by foreign direct investors in the gaming sector and banks”.
The gaming sector accounted for 70.8 percent of the total inward direct investment in 2018, according to the statistics bureau. A total of 11 Macau enterprises – employing close to 87,000 full-time workers – benefitted from such inward direct investment in Macau’s gaming sector.
A number of outside investors in Macau’s gaming sector was registered either in Hong Kong, the British Virgin Islands or the Cayman Islands.
Market-wide in Macau, inward direct investment income totalled MOP72.33 billion in 2018, up by 18.8 percent year-on-year. “Income earned by direct investors in the gaming sector grew by 15.0 percent year-on-year” last year to MOP42.57 billion, the statistics bureau said.
What economists term “stock” of inward direct investment to Macau reached MOP292.83 billion by the end of last year, with gaming accounting for about 45.3 percent of the total.
Outward direct investment made by Macau enterprises increased by 22.3 percent year-on-year to MOP2.22 billion in 2018, “as Macau gaming enterprises recorded direct investment of MOP1.03 billion abroad in 2018, against a repatriation of MOP2.94 billion in 2017,” said the statistics bureau. A total of four Macau gaming enterprises were involved in outward direct investments in 2018.
A separate set of data published by the same bureau last month showed that the gross value added by the gaming industry to Macau’s economy went up by 13.6 percent year-on-year in 2018 to MOP203.38 billion, “the highest value since 2014”. The indicator measures sectoral contribution to the overall economy.
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President and chief executive of casino equipment provider Scientific Games