The head of Macau’s anti-graft agency has pledged support to mainland China’s crackdown on corruption.
The pledge was made during meetings with top officials from the central government in Beijing on March 30 and 31, according to a press release from Macau’s Commission Against Corruption.
Macau commissioner André Cheong Weng Chon said his agency would also help Beijing in its hunt for suspects that are on the run, and with the recovery of laundered funds.
Macau’s gaming industry sector has already seen 10 consecutive months of year-on-year gross gaming revenue decline, linked by a number of analysts to the fact many high value gamblers are staying away from the city in the wake of the mainland’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign.
China’s Premier Li Keqiang said last month, in his annual work report to the National People’s Congress in Beijing, that there would be no let up in the anti-graft drive by the central authorities.
Shortly after, Beijing announced it was intensifying its anti-corruption drive with Operation Skynet. The multi-agency operation is intended to target corrupt officials and the institutions that enable them, such as underground banks and offshore companies.
“Through enhancing communication and cooperation with mainland authorities… and supporting the fugitive manhunt and asset recovery activities, the [commission] will exert the best efforts to prevent Macau from turning into a transit point or destination for illicit money outflows and corrupt officials fleeing the mainland,” the press release stated, quoting Mr Cheong.
In a meeting with China’s Procurator-General Cao Jianming, Mr Cheong added that Macau’s anti-graft agency would strengthen cooperation with the neighbouring Guangdong, Guangxi and Fujian regions.
In Beijing, Mr Cheong also met with the Minister for Supervision, Huang Shuxian (pictured), who urged Macau to cooperate with Beijing’s anti-graft drive. Mr Huang said that he also wished to cooperate with Macau’s Commission Against Corruption to strengthen the tracking down of fugitives and proceeds, according to the press release.
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"I am not going to speculate on what the [casino licence refreshment] tender requirements would be. I have full confidence and faith in the Macau government to treat everyone fairly"
Wilfred Wong Ying Wai
President and chief operating officer of Macau-based casino operator Sands China