With effect from Tuesday (February 23), no city in mainland China is any longer considered by the Macau authorities to be ‘medium risk’ for transmission of Covid-19 infection. As a result, no mainland China visitor will currently be automatically required to complete quarantine upon arrival in Macau, based specifically on whether the arriving visitor had been to any ‘medium risk’ place on the mainland in the 14 days prior to coming to Macau.
The improvement in the Covid-19 situation in mainland China – with no reports of new cluster infections for several days – led the Macau health authorities to consider all mainland China cities as ‘low risk’ for transmission of the disease.
The last two cities to be taken out from the list of ‘medium risk’ places were Shijiazhuang in Hebei province, and Suihua municipality in Heilongjiang province.
Authorities on the mainland had scrapped on Monday all Covid-19 ‘medium’ and ‘high-risk’ designations for communities there, after Gaocheng district in Shijiazhuang and Suihua were both downgraded that day to ‘low risk’.
The Macau health authorities require those who have been to any mainland cities designated ‘medium risk’, or who have been to Taiwan, in the 14 days immediately prior to arriving in Macau, to undergo 14 days of quarantine, a process officially called ‘medical observation’. Such quarantine must be completed in selected Macau hotels, under the guidance of the city’s Health Bureau.
According to current rules, people from ‘low risk’ cities on mainland China may enter Macau quarantine-free, as long as they provide a certificate showing they are negative for Covid-19 infection, and meet other requirements.
Mainland China is currently the only place to have a largely quarantine-free travel bubble with Macau, amid existing travel restrictions as countermeasures against Covid-19. According to a number of investment analysts covering the Asian gaming sector, the majority of gamblers in Macau’s casinos are visitors from mainland China.
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”Any reduction in [Macau gaming] tax would be positive for future profits and cash flows, all else equal”
DS Kim, Amanda Cheng and Livy Lyu
Analysts at brokerage JP Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific)