Brokerage Nomura says the mulled reopening of casino complex Resorts World Genting (RWG) in Malaysia on October 1 is a “positive development” for parent Genting Malaysia Bhd.
Malaysian Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Nancy Shukri, proposed earlier this week that the Genting Highlands destination – which hosts Resorts World Genting (pictured in a file photo) – be allowed to open as part of a domestic tourism bubble, along with two other domestic tourism destinations. According to media reports, the proposal was approved at a Covid-19 Ministerial Quartet meeting on Tuesday.
A meeting of the country’s Special Committee on Tackling Covid-19 was scheduled to take place yesterday, to review the proposal.
The property’s promoter announced on May 31 that the whole of the complex was to be temporarily shut due to an uptick in Covid-19 infections in Malaysia. The property remains shut.
A reopening of Resorts World Genting on October 1 would be “a positive development,” wrote Nomura analysts Tushar Mohata and Alpa Aggarwal in a memo dated from Wednesday.
They added: “It is in line with our expected timeline of an end-September or early-October reopening, and we think it is slightly earlier than consensus expectations.”
Nomura sad that “while it is possible that visitors [to the casino complex] would need to be fully vaccinated, we believe this will not prove to be a constraint given the high inoculation rate in Kuala Lumpur and surrounding areas.”
Once the reopening of Resorts World Genting takes place, another development to watch out for in the near term would be the date for the Skyworlds theme park launch, according to Nomura. The brokerage’s analysts said it should be “some time within fourth quarter 2021″.
The new outdoor theme park at Resorts World Genting has been touted as a likely major draw for tourists.
In its latest note, Nomura reiterated its expectation of an earnings turnaround for Genting Malaysia in the fourth quarter of 2021 due to the reopening of Resorts World Genting and gradual ramp-up of visitor numbers to the property.
In the second-quarter results announced in August, Genting Malaysia said it had significantly narrowed its quarterly loss year-on-year, thanks to factors including reopening of its casinos in the United States and the United Kingdom. But it still registered a group-wide loss amounting to MYR348.1 million (US$82.8 million).
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